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"THE BEST COMPUTER SPORTS GAME." 
That's the award SSI's COMPUTER 
BASEBALL" received from Electronic 
Games masazine (a subsidiary of 
Video magazine) for 1982. 

We appreciate the recognition, 
but frankly, we're not surprised. 
Especially \Mien you consider 
what it took to be the best 
It's a computer strategy 
game* so thorough yet so 
easy to use you'd swear 
you're managing a live 
team. 

It lets you enter exten- 
sive player statistics so you can 
create any team you like — 
from the neighborhood 
hackers to the great 1944 
Browns! 

gives you over 
strategy options to choose 
from, options so complete 
you have to remember to 
warm up relief pitchers 
the 

Its color Hi-Res graphics display 

r has enough animation to give you a 
good feel for the flow of the game. 

As a clincher. Teams Data Disks for 1980 
and 1981 are available if you want to use real 
AL and NL teams of those seasons. 

And the price? A steal at $39.95. (Data disks 
aie sold separately from SSI for $15.00 each.) 
As exciting as all this sounds, it's nothing 
compared to what you'll see when you get your 
mitts on the game at your local computer/game 
store. Then you'll really understand why people say 
Computer Baseball is what it is. 

The best. 


To order directly from SSI with your VISA or MC, call toll free 800-227-1617. ext 335 
(800-772-3545, ext 335 in California). To order by mail, send your check to Strategic Simula- 
tions Inc, 465 Fairchild Drive, Suite 108, Mountain View, CA 94043. 

All our games carry a 14-day money back guarantee. 


*For the 48K Apple* II with Applesoft ROM 
and one floppy disc drive. 


Aople is a resistered trademark of Apple Computer Inc. 


K j - a* part of our demanding standard!, of excriirncc, wr uso 1113X611 floppy discs. 


WE’RE LOOKING FOR A FEW GOOD DESIGNERS. We're always on the lookout for high- 
quality games from independent designers. If you have game programs thatyou'd like SSI to publish on 
a royalty basis, give us a call at (415) 964-1353 or write to SSI, 465 Fairchild Drive, Suite 108, Mountain 
View, CA 94043. 


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STAFF 

Editor: Russell Sipe 
Asst. Editor: Kirk Robinson 
Art and Layout: Tim Finkas 
Operations: Suzanne Sipe 
Typesetting: Comarco Inc. 
Printing: Quibodeaux Printing 
Cover Art: Tim Finkas 


Features 

WIZARDRY: PROVING GROUNDS... 6 

Review of Sir-tech's popular fantasy game Mark Marlow 


A BEGINNER’S GUIDE TO STRATEGY AND 1 0 

TACTICS IN EASTERN FRONT Bob Proctor 

TIME ZONE: AN INTERVIEW WITH ROBERTA WILLIAMS 14 

VOYAGER I: SABOTAGE OF THE ROBOT SHIP 16 

Avalon Hill’s new game reviewed Dave Jones 

SOME SCENES FROM THE 7TH WEST COAST 

COMPUTER FAIRE 20 

LONG DISTANCE GAMING: GAMES VIA 22 

THE SOURCE AND COMPUSERVE Deirdre Maioy 

JABBERTALKY, IN DEPTH 26 

Automated Simulation's word game reviewed Marty Halpem 

GREATEST BASEBAU TEAM - RESULTS 30 

OLYMPIC DECATHLON: A CLASSIC COMPUTER GAME 32 

Muse’s popular game analyzed Russell Sipe 


THE EAGLE HAS LANDED: A TRS-80 REVIEW 

Adventure International’s Lunar Lander game reviewed 

SWASHBUCKlfR: ANOTHER KIND OF PIRACY 

A new game from DataMost 


34 

Richard McGrath 

36 

Michael Cranford 


Departments 


Letters 2 

Hobby & Industry Notes 4 

Initial Comments 4 

Atari Arcade 18 

Silicon Cerebrum 24 

Writing tor Computer Gaming World 39 

Reader Input Device 40 


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1.1 — The Future of Computer Wargaming; Torpedo Fire; Robotwar; B-1 Nuclear Bomber; 
Crush, Crumble and Chomp; President Elect; Baseball Tournament; and more. 

2.1 — Napoleon’s Campaigns 1813 & 1815; The Swordthrust Series; Galaxy; Castle Wolfenstein; 
Tanktics; Baseball Tournament (Pt. 2); Operation Apocalypse; and more. 

2.2 — Southern Command; So You Want to Write a Computer Game; Napoleon’s Campaigns 
Designer’s Notes; Blackjack Master; The Current State of Computer Documentation; Robotwar 
Tournament Winner; Tigers in the Snow; Bug Attack; David’s Midnight Magic; and more. 


1 






LETTERS 

FROM “CARTEL” AUTHOR 

Dear Editor: 

A magazine that deals exclusively 
with the field of computer games is 
an idea whose time has come! As a 
computer games designer (I have 
written Computer Quarterback and 
Cartels & Cutthroats for SSI) I was 
optimistic about the impact a publi- 
cation such as yours could have on 
our young industry. However, after 
considering the Micro-Reviews in 
your Jan/Feb issue, I am seriously 
concerned as to whether that impact 
will be as positive as it could be. 

With an ever expanding array of 
competing products available each 
month, responsible reviews that 
give authors and publishers critical 
feedback and that provide consu- 
mers with reliable information to 
aid buying decisions are a major 
part of the role of a publication such 
as yours. Regretably, at least as re- 
gards the Jan/ Feb Micro-Reviews, I 
feel your accomplishment fell short 
of your promise. The review of 
Cartels & Cutthroats, of which I am 
co-author, was very disappointing 
both in itself and as regards po- 
tential comparisons with another 
business program reviewed at the 
same time. 

So as not to sound “sour grapes” I 
will tell you that Cartels has been 
reviewed in print by educators, econ- 
omists, management training con- 
sultants, and observers of the micro- 
computer software field (most nota- 
bly David Ahl - owner and publisher 
of Creative Computing) -all of whom 
had high praise for the achieve- 
ments of Cartels & Cutthroats. In 
addition, the information that my 
publisher has received in the form of 
“feedback/ warranty cards” indicates 
that purchasers are equally pleased 
with this product. Since its intro- 
duction a year ago 99% of the people 
returning cards (a demographically 
diverse group) have stated that 
Cartels was fun to play. Cartels was 
also ranked consistently first or 
second in playability and realism 
against SSI’s impressive portfolio of 
20 games by consumers during that 
year. Thus, I feel safely sure of the 
quality of Cartels & Cutthroats even 
though your reviewer had doubts. 

Although the overall impression 
of your review was positive, the re- 
viewer wrote an awkwardly unbal- 
anced report on the game. The basis 
on which a product must be judged 


is against its objective and how well 
it is met. In several places on the 
packaging and in the game manual 
Cartels states its goal to be a play- 
able game built on a foundation of a 
very realistic business simulation. 
If we look only at those sections of 
your review that deal with this issue 
such points as follow are made: 
“well executed economic simula- 
tion”, “quite good. ..market simula- 
tions”, “well executed and allow 
interaction by players”, “a good 
introduction to micro-economics”, 
and “an excellent program”. How- 
ever, the overall impression of re- 
viewer ambivalence is conveyed by 
the fact that with each positive 
comment (dealing with an issue of 
major importance to the objective of 
the game) there is also a negative 
comment (concerning some super- 
ficial element of the program). The 
casual reader, therefore, gathers a 
mixed impression from sentences 
like: “The market simulation seems 
quite good although even the manual 
admits that beyond 40 quarters the 
economic simulation begins to break- 
down”. The two points are hardly 
parallel! The reason we said the 
simulation “may” breakdown is 
that we never played a game that 
long. In Cartels a short game is 8 
quarters, a normal game 10 or 12 
quarters, and a long game (re- 
quiring over 8 hours to play) would 
be 20 quarters. Why would anyone 
consider not being able to play a 
game for over 16 hours (40 quarters) 
as a serious flaw? 

Another draw back, at least ac- 
cording to the reviewer who devoted 
an entire paragraph to it, is the 
“tedious” graphics and sound ef- 
fects. In our play-testing, these fea- 
tures were found almost universally 
appealing. In fact, the cute sayings 
and animated interlude that the 
reviewer considered repetitous were 
introduced as a result of “human 
engineering” that found that people 
had a better “feel” for the time 
pattern of the game if such delays 
were introduced. In my observation 
it was disruptive to people who 
spent a relatively large amount of 
time observing the results of their 
previous plans and developing stra- 
tegies for the next turn if the com- 
puter simply returned the results 
instantaneously. The delay was 
introduced to “simulate” the fact 
that the player’s review and plan- 
ning took place at a “no-time-in- 
terval” between three long months 
during which plans were imple- 
mented, products were manufactured, 
and sales were made. Although few 


players of Cartels are aware of this 
reasoning, the vast majority found 
that the animated interlude made 
the game “feel better”. A reviewer 
could very well miss the subtlety of 
this element, but one not so obsessed 
with “delays” might have at least 
not wasted a whole paragraph on a 
point that in no way reduces the 
game’s overall fitness as a playable, 
realistic business simulation. 

However, though I obviously take 
issue with the perceptions of your 
reviewer concerning Cartels & Cut- 
throats, I feel the greater damage is 
done by the fact this demonstrates 
your lack of a standard policy for 
reviews. Product reviews can poten- 
tially help consumers choose be- 
tween competing programs, but if 
your current review practices are 
continued, we are back to “buyer 
beware”. The review of Cartels & 
Cutthroats was proceeded by a simi- 
lar look at a program called “Wall 
Street” by Donald Brown. I do not 
wish to “pick on” Wall Street, but a 
comparison of the two products and 
reviews is a perfect example of how 
the lack of a formal review policy 
destroys your credibility. While the 
reviewer of Cartels points out the 
limitations of its 15 page (12,000 
word) full-size typeset manual, no 
mention is made of the six page 
(2400 word) full-size notes that ac- 
company Wall Street. Cartels & 
Cutthroats is packaged in SSI’s 
attractive four color box (that has 
become the industry standard for 
sophisticated software products) and 
includes a short rules reference card 
and a pad of planning sheets while 
Wall Street is in a simple “zip-lock” 
bag with a disk. Cartels & Cut- 
throats costs $39.95 while Wall Street 
sells for $29.95. I won’t attempt to 
make distinctions in the less tan- 
gible aspects of the two products 
except to say that they differ sig- 
nificantly in realism and playability. 
However, the overall impression in 
the Wall Street review was slightly 
negative and in the Cartels review it 
was somewhat positive. I am certain 
that if one reviewer wrote both 
reviews (instead of the two very 
different writers you employed) there 
would have been much broader 
distinctions drawn than appeared 
in the Jan/Feb issue. 

I propose that you have a panel of 
reviewers for each field of interest 
(such as business games, wargames, 
adventures, etc.) who would com- 
municate frequently enough to stan- 
dardize their perceptions. Thus, even 
if different reviewers look at dif- 


2 



ferent products the overall rating of 
a product would reflect some objec- 
tive standard. This method has been 
used very effectively by InfoWorld. I 
hope you accept my suggestion in 
the constructive spirit in which it is 
offered. 

Dan Bunten 

Management Systems Engineering 
Little Rock, AR 

As Lucretius said “What is food to 
one, is to others poison. ” This is with 
no one more true than with com- 
puter gamers. There are many dif- 
ferent types of computer games 
which appeal to many different 
types of gamers. We try to keep this 
fact in mind when we select the 
articles/reviews that will appear in 
CGW. As an individual, I find Car- 
tels to be a better game than Wall 
Street. But, as an editor, I must 
realize that every review need not 
necessarily reflect my own bias. If I 
feel that a review has misrepre- 
sented a game in either direction, I 
will reject it or return it for cor- 
rection. However, as you point out, 
the overall tone of the Cartel review 
was positive while the Wall Street 
review was somewhat negative. 

Your suggestion for a panel of 
reviewers in various areas is a good 
one which 1 would like to implement 
as time goes along. As of now, we 
continue to look for more “quality” 
writers to make CGW the type of 
magazine that all computer gamers 
would like to read. -Ed. 


Dear Editor, 

I am glad to see a publication like 
Computer Gaming World at this 
time. The two local computer stores 
do not stock a large selection of 
computer games, and it’s nice to be 
able to keep abreast of the latest 
developments in computer games. 

I do have two suggestions that I 
would like you to try to incorporate 
into your magazine. First of all, it 
would be nice if there were a few less 
articles about computer wargames 
-not all of us are wargame fanatics. I 
myself would prefer more articles on 
fantasy & adventure games. Sec- 
ondly, I would like to see a column 
that would provide would-be adven- 
turers like myself hints for the 
various games (e.g.. Wizardry, Sword- 
thrust, Zork, Dunjonquest, and/or 
the Scott Adam’s Adventure Series). 
I realize the main objective in these 


games is to discover things on your 
own, but it can be quite frustrating 
until you find the correct procedure. 
For example, I lost three of my best 
Swordthrust characters trying to 
scale the cliff in Swordthrust #3 
(Kidnapper’s Cove) before I learned 
the alternative from a friend. 

Joe Ankenbauer 
Council Bluffs, lA 

Dear Editor, 

I am greatly enjoying CGW. How- 
ever, I hope you will PLEASE avoid 
giving away answers to challenges, 
as was done in Deirdre Maloy’s 
review of Ultima. For example, 
comments such as “will always be 
caught.. .in that city”; “can be found 
on the third floor of a dungeon”; 
“can be reached only by boat or air 
car” spoil the reader’s fun of dis- 
covering these facts for him/herself. 
ANY clues spoil the fun. 

Ken Sherwood 
Reading, PA 

As these two letters illustrate there 
is a disagreement as to the merit of 
including hints for adventure games. 
We have decided to compromise. 
When hints are included in an 
article they will be in slip code. The 
reader must shift each letter one 
position to translate the hint. In this 
manner we hope that those who 
want the clues can get them and 
those who do not will not read them 
accidentally. - Ed. 

2.1 COVER 

Dear Editor: 

I would like to congratulate you on 
the quality of your new magazine, it 
looks like you are off to a great start. 
In particular, the cover of vol 2, no. 1 
is fantastic. It exactly captures the 
status of computer gaming at the 
present time. Personal computers 
bear the same relationship to the 
human race as the 2001 monolith 
bore to the pre-humans. If you ever 
publish a poster series, this should 
be among the first. 

W. B. Brogden 
Port Aransas, TX 


NOT ENOUGH ATARI 

Dear Editor: 

The cover of 2.2 should have been 
an Apple grove instead of a maze of 
hedges! There was not one article on 
games for the Atari. Only a handful 


of the numerous new games for Atari 
were even mentioned. Every game 
(except 1 TRS-80 game) review was 
for the Apple. 

There also seems to be a pre- 
occupation among your staff with 
wargames. Although these can be 
enjoyable, the arcade style games 
are much more exciting and hold 
one’s interest longer than a game 
that may take hours or days to 
complete. 

The graphics and sound are far 
superior on the Atari 800 and it’s 
time the computer gaming world 
realized this fact. Software for the 
Atari is growing by leaps and bounds 
and soon will equal Apple in numbers. 

I feel that your magazine must 
cover all the major computers so 
that it will be a representative publi- 
cation for the great big computer 
gaming world and not just another 
orchard for Apple. 

Phil Karst 
Indianapolis, IN 

Hurray for A tari users! The paucity 
of Atari reviews in CGW to this 
point is due to the fact that we 
haven’t had much of a response 
from Atari gamers. Atari users-lets 
hear from you. 

CGW began business with an 
Apple H last summer. We expressed 
interest in Atari articles (and TRS- 
80) whenever we came into contact 
with those users. We have just 
purchased an Atari 800 and hope to 
cover the Atari market more com- 
pletely. You will note that a regular 
department on Atari-arcade games 
begins in this issue — Atari Arcade. 
Manufacturers of Atari computer 
game programs are encouraged to 
send review copies of their products. 

We are still looking for TRS-80 
reviewers. Richard McGrath can’t 
cover the whole field no matter how 
much he’d like to. 

PLEASE 
TAKE TIME 
TO FILL OUT 
READER INPUT 
DEVICE 
(P. 40) 


3 



HOBBY AND 
INDUSTRY NEWS 

Broderbund Software has released 
DUELING DIGITS and LABY- 
RINTH for the Apple II computer. 
They have also released an Atari 
version of their popular APPLE 
PANIC. All three sell for $29.95. 

DALE ARCHIBALD has recent- 
ly signed a contract with the Field 
Newspaper Syndicate to write a 
weekly computer software and hard- 
ware review column. You may see it 
in your local newspaper in the near 
future. 

SSI will be publishing the first 
“monster wargame” for the comput- 
er. GUADALCANAL CAMPAIGN 
(slated for late June/early July re- 
lease) will be 292 turns long in the 
campaign scenario. The four basic 
scenarios are Coral Sea, Battle of 
Eastern Solomons, Battle of Santa 
Cruz Island, and Guadalcanal. Each 
ship, plane and battalion of the cam- 
paign is represented. Can be played 
as a two-player game or against the 


computer (computer plays the Japa- 
nese). Air, land, and sea battles. 
Wow! It will sell for $59.95. 

When SSI released ROAD TO 
GETTYSBURG they added a new 
twist to their games-the option of 
fighting the tactical battles with 
miniatures. They went back and 
added this option to NAPOLEON’S 
CAMPAIGN’S 1813 & 1815. If you 
have the old NAP. CAMP. 13 & 15 
disk you can return it with $5.00 for 
an updated disk. Their address is 
465 Fairchild Dr., Mountain View, 
CA. 94043. 

By the time you read this maga- 
zine SSI should have the 1981 
COMPUTER BASEBALL team 
data disk available (including the 
season stat complier). Send $15.00 
for disk. 

Those that would like to have the 
GBTOAT teams (see results in this 
issue) on disk can drop a postcard to 
J.K. LEE 1519 Santa Teresa, So. 
Pasadena, CA 91030, for information. 

Automated Simulations is spon- 
soring RICOCHET BOUNCE OFF 
(a national championship tourna- 
ment for their action/strategy game). 


You can get information from your 
local computer store or write directly 
to Automated Simulations at P.O. 
Box 4247, Mountain View, C A 94040. 
Deadline for entries is June 30, 1982. 

Automated Simulations new golf 
game, FORE!, should be available 
early in May. 

SSI will release SYMTRON 
MASTERS in early June. SM is a 
futuristic robot combat game with 
tactical aspects and limited control 
over robots through the commander. 
It will cost $39.95. 

Avalon Hill has a long list of titles 
coming out in the months ahead. By 
the time you read this DRAW 
POKER, BOMBER ATTACK, 
TANK ARCADE, ROAD RACER/ 
BOWLER and SHOOTOUT AT 
THE OK GALAXY should be out. 
According to AH these will be aimed 
at the Atari 400/800 markets with 
selected titles on the Apple, Pet, and 
TRS-80 Color Computer. COMPUT- 
ER BASEBALL STRATEGY 
should be RD, G.F.S. SORCERESS, 
COMPUTER FACTS IN FIVE, and 
ALIEN. 





Apple Software • 

All Proyrams On Disk 

SNEAKERS 

29.95 

■ 23.96 

TRACK ATTACK . . 

29.95 

23.96 

KABUL SPY 

34.95 

27.96 

DUNG BEETLE .... 

29.95 

23.96 

MOUSKATTACK . . 

34.95 

27.96 

ZORK 1 OR II 

39.95 

• 31.96 

DARK FOREST .... 

29.95 

23.96 

LISA ED. SYSTEM 

119.95 

95.96 

APPLE PANIC 

29.95 

• 23.96 

TIME ZONE 99.95 

• 74.76 

ARCADE MACHINE 

44.95 

■ 33.16 

GORGON 

39.95 

■ 29.85 

PFS (New Version) . 

125.00 

- 95.85 

WIZARDRY 

49.95 

- 37.85 

TWERPS 

29.95 

■ 22.15 

UTILITY CITY 

29.50 

21.85 

THRESHOLD 

39.95 

- 29.85 

1 EMPIRE WORLD BUILDERS 32.95 

24.85 

|dBASEII (req. softcard) ...700.00 ■ 

498.16 

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INITIAL 

COMMENTS 


In addition to games mentioned 
elsewhere in this issue the following 
games have been received by CGW. 
Most but not all of these games will 
receive more detailed attention in 
future issues. 

Cavalier Computer 
P.O. Box 2032 
Del Mar, CA 92014 

MICROWAVE: A maze-chase 
game which pits ‘Teddy the Salvage 
Man” against the decadent aliens. 
Teddy patrols a spaceship picking 
up faulty equipment while avoiding 
the aliens. Microwave dishes can 
be dropped which kill aliens. 

Data Most 
19273 Kenya St. 

Northridge, CA 91326 

All Data Most games run on 
Apple II with 48K. 

CASINO: Five casino games are 
available on this $39.95 disk-roulette, 
poker, keno, blackjack and bacca- 
rat. 


SNACK ATTACK: Data Most’s 
maze-chase game. Five levels of 
play keep this $29.95 game inter- 
esting. 

COUNTY FAIR: Shooting Gallery 
arcade game similar to the coin- 
operated arcade game. $29.95. 

THIEF: Similar to the coin-operat- 
ed arcade game BEZERK. 
$29.95. 

H.A.L. LABS 
P.O. Box 2411 
Riverside, CA 92516-2411 

TAXMAN: Billed as “the definitive 
version of the popular game” this 
Apple II game looks just like the 
popular arcade game. Keyboard 
play. $23.00. 

Spectral Associates 
141 Harvard Ave. 

Tacoma, WA 98466 

COLOR SPACE TRADERS: 
Economic game of establishing 
space shipping lanes. Similar to 
the board game ACQUIRE. Runs 
on the TRS-80 Color Computer 
(16K gives low-res graphics, 32K 
gives hi-res graphics). 

COLOR SPACE INVADERS: 
TRS-80 Color Computer version 


4 







of the popular arcade game. Non- 
extended basic. 

MADNESS AND THE MINO- 
TAUR: An adventure game of 
the Traditional “two-word command” 
type. TRS-80 Color Computer. N on- 
extended basic. 

GHOST GOBBLER: A TRS-80 
Color Computer version of PAC- 
MAN. 16K non-extended basic 
required. 

Avalon Hill 

4517 Harford Road 

Baltimore, MD 21214 

COMPUTER STOCKS & 
BONDS: Computer version of 
AH’s board game STOCKS & 
BONDS. Available for the TRS- 
80, Apple H, PET,Atari 400/800, 

and IBM personal computers. Disk 
versions $25.00; tape versions 
$ 20 . 00 . 

GUNS OF FORT DEFIANCE: 
Strategy/arcade game in which 
you command a 19th century ar- 
tillery piece repelling cavalry, in- 
fantry or another artillery piece. 
Runs on TRS-80, Apple H, Pet, 
Atari 400/800 and IBM personal 
computers. 

Lighting Software 
P.O. Box 11725 
Palo Alto, CA 94306 

MASTERTYPE: A typing instruc- 
tion system/game using a hi-res 
game format to teach/improve 
typing skills. Seventeen progressive 
lessons help develop mastery of 
the whole keyboard. Apple II 
48K. 

Voyager Software 

P.O. Box 15-518 

San Francisco, CA 94115 

STARSHIP COMMANDER: A 

hi res space combat simulation in 
which the player simulates the 
various aspects of being a com- 
mander of a starship. You must 
manage a crew, allocate power, 
maintain shields, navigate, fire 
weapons, and destroy up to three 
enemy vessels. Look for more in 
our next issue on this very well 
designed program. Apple H 48K. 

L & S Computerware 
1589 Fraser Dr. 

Sunnyvale, CA 94087 

CROSSWORD MAGIC 2.0: Up 
dated version of their crossword 
generation program. Puzzles can 
be created, saved, printed out, worked 
on monitor. $49.95. 


Strategic Simulations 
465 Fairchild Dr. Suite 108 
Mountain View, CA 94043 

THE ROAD TO GETTYSBURG: 

a computer simulation of the Gettys- 
burg campaign based on the Napo- 
leon’s Campaigns 1813 & 1815 
game. Apple II 48K, $59.95. 

THE PURSUIT OF THE GRAF 
SPEE: Younger brother of Com- 
puter Bismarck. This one recreates 
the final day s of the German pocket 
Battleship Graf Spec. Tactical battles 
can be fought on-line or with 
miniatures. Apple H 48K. $59.95. 

AIR COMBAT DATA DISK: 

Contains over 70 new aircraft 
from WWII and the Korean War. 
$15.00. 

Sir-Tech Software, Inc. 

6 Main Street 
Ogdensburg, N.Y. 13669 

KNIGHT OF DIAMONDS: the 
second scenario for their popular 
Wizardry role-playing simula- 
tion. 

Highland Computers, Inc. 

14422 S.E. 132nd 
Renton, WA 98056 

Five hi res adventure games (all 
Apple 48K): 

GOBLINS: (animation); $27.50. 

MUMMY’S REVENGE: (full 
color hi-res); $30.00. 

OLDORF’S REVENGE: $19.95. 

TARTURIAN: $24.95. 

CREATURE VENTURE: (ani- 
mation); $24.95. 

Gamma Software 
P.O. Box 25625 
Los Angeles, CA 90025 

HOCKEY: A high-speed game 
of hockey. Two to four players 
control the two teams in this ex- 
citing game which rewards skill. 
Similar to the Atari home video 
version of hockey. Requires 16K 
and sells for $29.95. 

80-Northwest Publishing Inc. 
3838 South Warner St. 

Tacoma, WA 98409 

THE CAPTAIN 80 BOOK OF 
BASIC ADVENTURES: 252 page 
book with listing for 18 different 
adventure games. Includes 10 chapters 
of background material about writing 
and playing adventures. All for TRS-80. 
Nice introduction by Scott Adams. 
$19.95. 


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5 



. AVIZARIilW 

The Proving Grounds of the Mad Overloid 

^ A Review by Mark Marlow 


BASIC 

INFORMATION 

NAME: 

Wizardry 

TYPE: 

Graphic Adventure 

SYSTEM: 

Apple II 48K 

FORMAT: 

Disk 

# PLAYERS: 

1 

AUTHOR: 

Andrew Greenberg & 

Robert Woodhead 

PRICE: 

$49.95 

PUBLISHER: 

Sir-tech Software 

6 Main Street 

Ogdensburg, NY 13669 


HEAR YE, HEAR YE! Our Noble Lord and Most 
gracious ruler, Trebor the Beneficent, has need of 
brave men and women with stout hearts and 
strong constitutions to undertake the task of 
recovering an amulet; treacherously stolen hy the 
evil wizard Werdna. Be ye warrior, wizard, priest 
or thief-human or otherwise-ye are welcome! Ad- 
venturers are invited to meet at the tavern of 
Gigamesh. Successful candidates will be knighted 
and hired into the king’s service. Please leave 
name and address of next of kin at the Adven- 
turer’s Inn. (We need to know who to hill in case of 
accidental death or dismemberment!) 

Such might be the bulletin posted in a medieval 
town in some epic fantasy tale. WIZARDRY: 
The Proving Grounds of the Mad Overlord is a 


game of epic proportions comprising nearly 14,000 
lines of code on both sides of a diskette. The 
brainchild of Andrew Greenberg and Robert 
Woodhead, WIZARDRY is the culmination of 
nearly 2y2 man-years of intensive effort. The 
original WIZARDRY program was written in 
Basic which proved too slow to make the game a 
viable product. The game was rewritten in Pascal 
hut was delayed until the release of a runtime 
system which would allow the game to be played 
on Apples without language systems. The final 
result is a game which is superbly playable but 
with enough variation and complexity to whet the 
appetite of the most discriminating adventurer. 
THE WORLD OF WIZARDRY 

WIZARDRY is a fantasy role-playing game 
modeled on the Dungeons and Dragons game 
concept with the computer assuming the role of 
the Dungeon Master. The world of “The Proving 
Grounds of the Mad Overload” consists of a castle, 
an inn, a tavern, a trading post, a temple, the 
training grounds, and a three-dimensional maze, 
ten levels deep, below the castle. 

The training grounds located at the edge of 
town, are the first of several stops you must make. 
Here, you enter a name and/or password for your 
character. You are then given a choice of races. 
Wizardry characters may be humans, dwarves, 
elves, gnomes or hobbits. At this point you are 
asked to choose the character’s alignment. A 
caution here, only characters of similar alignment 
can travel together. For example, neutral charac- 
ters may travel with either good or evil alignment 
groups, but good and evil may never mix. The 


6 




computer then generates a random number of 
points which you may add to the character’s basic 
attributes. The six attributes are Strength, I.Q., 
Piety, Vitality, Agility, and Luck. 

Based on the character type you pick and the 
points you assign, you may choose one of the 
classes which appear on the screen. Beginning 
players will usually be allowed to pick fighters, 
mages, priests, and thieves. As the characters 
gain experience, you will have the option of chang- 
ing the class of your character to an elite class. The 
elite characters are bishops, lords, samurai, and 
ninja. 

However, there are drawbacks to changing the 
class of your character. The first and foremost 
drawback is that your character loses all of his 
experience points. The second is that your charac- 
ter will age. Attributes tend to decline after age 50 
and the effectiveness of spells, etc., will decrease in 
direct proportion to the decline in attributes. 

Now that the characters are created, the next 
stop is Gigamesh’s Tavern. Parties are assembled 
here before entering the maze. After the party is 
assembled, a trip to Boltac’s Trading Post is in 
order. There is a wide selection of weapons, armor, 
and magic spells. Boltac has been known to run 
out of items so don’t rely on Boltac’s for all of your 
equipment. Some very powerful items can be 
found by opening chests in the maze. Any items 
you cannot use can be sold back to Boltac at half 
the retail price. 

ENTERING THE MAZE 

Anytime you enter the maze, you will automati- 
cally be in camp. The first time you enter you 
should EQUIP the entire party. As you do this, the 
armor class of each player who has purchased 
armor drops considerably. The lower the number, 
the stronger is his armor. When you leave camp, 
the maze appears in 3-dimensional aspect in the 
upper left corner of your screen. Movement is 
generated using either “R” and “L” for right and 
left, “F” for forward or the “A”, “W”, “D” group for 
left, forward, and right respectively. When you 
come to a door, you must use the “K” command to 
kick in the door. Some rather nasty surprises are 
usually waiting for you on the other side. 

MAGIC SPELLS 

Probably the single most fascinating aspect of 
Wizardry is the ability of priests, mages, bishops 
lords, and samurai to cast spells. Wizardry comes 
with a book of some fifty spells which the magic 
users can cast by uttering a magic word. Arcane 
sounding words such as MILWA and LOMILWA 
can shed light in certain situations. The spells 
cannot all be used at the outset. As in real life, the 


ability to use certain things must be gained 
through experience. Therefore, in order to be able 
to cast the higher level spells, your character must 
gain enough levels to learn these spells. Another 
nice little item worth remembering is that you only 
have a certain number of spell points. Once these 
are exhausted you must leave the dungeon and 
rest up before the points are renewed. 

Certain items in the dungeon also have magical 
qualities. Bishops have the ability to identify 
these items, it is, therefore, a good idea to bring one 
along in the early stages of the game. If you don’t 
bring a bishop, you will have to pay exorbitant 
rates at Boltac’s to get the items identified. You 
could always take a chance and equip your charc- 
ter with the items you find, but if the item is cursed, 
your characters performance in battle could be 
adversely affected. 



MAPPING THE MAZE 

Each level of the dungeon is a grid measuring 
approximately 20 by 20. Mapping is essential to 
survival in the game. Being trapped on an 
unknown level and getting the entire party slaugh- 
tered because you didn’t know the way to the stairs 
has caused many a nightmare for unsuspecting 
adventurers. The stairs leading to the castle are 
located at co-ordinate 0,0. The casting of a 
DUMAPIC spell will tell you your exact location 
with respect to the stairs to the castle. By using 
DUMAPIC in conjunction with MALOR, the 
teleportation spell, you can pretty much travel all 
over the maze with relative safety. Just remember 
that the stairs are one level below the castle, so 
that if DUMAPIC tells you that you are 13 steps 
east, 10 steps north, and 7 levels down; you must 
go 13 west, 10 south, and 6 up to arrive at the 
stairs. 

Wizardry is an extremely complex game and one 
of the most challenging tasks is to complete an 
accurate map of all ten levels. There are many 
tricks programmed in to make mapping difficult. I 
would appreciate receiving copies of maps from 
any readers who have mapped all ten levels and 
compare them to the ones I have made. If I can 
compile what I believe to be an accurate and com- 
plete representation of all ten levels, and the 
public response is favorable, then the maps may 
be published in this magazine. Also, if you have a 
list of magic items and their uses, I would like to 


7 



compile a guide to the objects you can find in the 
maze. 

GRAPHICS 

If you are looking for a game with extensive 
graphics and sophisticated animation, then Wiz- 
ardry might disappoint you. The graphics appear 
in the same small square that depicts the 3-D 
maze. The monsters appear in the corner and a 
description of the monster group(s) appears at the 
top of the screen. Several things can occur during 
an encounter. Y ou could surprise the monsters and 
have one round of unanswered combat. If the 
monsters surprise you, then they get one round of 
unanswered combat. If you both run into each 
other at the same time, the computer will ran- 
domly pick who gets to fight first, though high 
agility or luck could swing things in your favor. 

Encounters are fought in turns: you determine 
what each character in your band is going to do, 
then the computer gives you the result in rapid 
sequence. The display speed can be adjusted from 
1 to 5000 which translates to anywhere from a 
fraction of a second to five seconds. 

UTILITY OPTIONS 

The boot side of the Wizardry diskette has a 
number of important utility options. If you are 
playing the game and accidentally hit reset, you 
may use the REjCOVER option to save the charac- 
ters who are in the maze. In older versions, this 
would cause the characters to age 10 years, but the 
newer versions have removed this penalty. 

The M)AKE SCENARIO option allows you to 
create an unlimited number of back up scenarios. 
This option enables you to use the copy you create 
to play the game, saving wear and tear on the 
original. The option does require two disk drives. 

The BjACKUP CHARACTERS option allows 
you to save your characters onto a DOS 3.3 in- 
itialized disk in case you should crash the pro- 
gram and inadvertently wipe out your characters. 
You can recover from the back up directly onto the 
scenario from which you made the back up. 

Another option allows you to change the names 
of characters. This is useful when you transfer 
characters between scenarios and find that you 
have two characters with the same name. 

The TjRANSFER option allows you to transfer 
characters between Wizardry scenarios, though it 
deletes the character from the source scenario 
before writing it to the new scenario. 

Finally, there is the UjPDATE option, which 
allows you to update a friend’s Wizardry disk if it 
is an older version. 

TIPS ON STRATEGY 

The biggest mistake you can make in Wizardry 


is to attempt too much too soon. Patience is defi- 
nitely a virtue. The first few forays into the maze 
should be hit and run type maneuvers. Fight one 
encounter, then get the heck out of the maze. Use 
your healing spells often. The strongest initial 
group consists of three fighters, two priests, and a 
mage. Later, you should include a thief (great for 
disarming trapped chests) and possibly a bishop 
to identify objects. A level 12 or higher bishop can 
identify most objects fairly quickly. 

Don’t attempt going down to the third or fourth 
levels until your characters are level 10 or higher. 
Hit points can be lost quickly so use your priests to 
heal during combat. Later, when your characters 
have found and defeated Werdna, you can find 
ways to build up characters rapidly. 

1) Finding the entrance to the 10th level. 

(UIFSF JT B DIVUF MPDBUFE BU 

9F,30,9E) 

2) Fighting greater demons. 

(VTJOH MBLBOJUP XJMM VTVBMMZ 

TNPUIFS BCPVU IBMG PG UIFN) 

3) Finding the gold key. 

(UIF HPME LFZ JT MPDBUFE PO UIF 

TFDPOE MFWFM JO B EBSL BSFB) 

4) Getting back into the castle after defeating 

Werdna. 

(JG ZPV BSF JO XFSEOBT MBJS, DBNQ 

JNNFEJBUFMZ, DBTU NBMPS BOE VTF 

UIFTF DPPSEJOBUFT: 28X, 4T, lOV) 

CONCLUSIONS 

Wizardry is complex, but even with its com- 
plexity, is an extremely playable game. It is highly 
interactive to the point that you could easily be- 
come emotionally attached to the characters you’ve 
created. I’ve talked to many players who have 
become Wizardry addicts to the point that they 
play the game eight to ten hours a day. 

I personally could find little to fault with Wiz- 
ardry. The biggest fault I could find in the mech- 
anics of the game was that it was too easy to get 
killed at first. This is very frustrating for a first 
time player. Even experienced characters could be 
killed off relatively easily if surprised by a group of 
spell casters. 

Another thing which would enhance the game 
would be the addition of more puzzles to solve. 
While the main quest is a difficult one to solve, 
smaller and more cryptic puzzles would greatly 
add to the overall effect. 

In conclusion, I would rate Wizardry as one of 
the all time classic computer games. It sets the 
standard by which all fantasy role playing games 
should be compared. In the years to come, if there 
ever is a Gaming Hall of Fame, Wizardry receives 
my vote as the first entry into its hallowed halls. 


8 




From 

S/nergistic 

Softt^are 

5221 120TH AVE. S.E. 
BELLEVUE. WA 98006 
(206) 226-3216 






• APVENTURE TO ATLANTIS is a new 

fast action apventure game, by Robert 
Clardy, continuing the Odyssey Apventure 
series. The forces of sorcery are gathering 
to repulse the marauding scientific Atlan- 
tean Kingdom. The epic battle can end 
either in the enslavement of the world or 
the absolute destruction of Atlantis. 

• Computer adventuring has been good, 
Synergistic Software has just made it 
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adventure game ever composed with more 


color and sound , highly detailed animation, 
arcade like action , true role playing , greater 
challenge, unending variety and endless 
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tion of computer games is all about. This 
professionally designed adventure was 
specifically written to take full advantage 
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with DOS 3.3 and paddles. 

Only $40.00 


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BASIC INFORMATION 

NAME: 

Eastern Front 

TYPE: 

Wargame 

SYSTEM: 

Atari 400/800 

FORMAT: 

Disk or Tape 

# PLAYERS: 

1 

AUTHOR: 

Chris Crawford 

PRICE: 

Disk-$29.95; Tape-$26.95 

PUBLISHER: 

Atari Program Exchange 
P.O. BOX 427 

155 Moffett Park Dr., B-1 
Sunnyvale, CA 94086 


EASTERN FRONT 1941 has been getting a 
lot of attention for a computer wargame. It was 
reviewed in CGW, of course (issue number one), 
but it has also been acclaimed in a computer maga- 
zines like BYTE and CREATIVE COMPUTING 


Perhaps it doesn’t deserve to be called a secret; 
every experienced wargamer I know has found it 
within three playings. It is a matter of setting the 
right strategic goals and discovering the tactics to 
carry them out. 

This article was written to help those of you with 
little or no wargaming experience. I don’t want to 
give you the answer on a plate but will try to direct 
your thinking. That way you can still experience 
the feeling of accomplishment that comes 
with that first win. 

What is a “win” anyway? The rulebook suggests 
that any score over 100 is very good. I estimate 
that the actual progress made by the German 
army in 1941 would rate about 110 or 120. But this 
is a solitare game, a win can be setting some 
objective for yourself and meeting it. You could, 
say, add 100 points to your best score and go for 
that. The best you can get is 255; around here the 
good players compare the number of Russian 
units left on the map to tell the difference between 
a so-so 255 and a really good 255! 


because of its excellent human engineering and STRATEGY: THE BIG PICTURE 


graphics. I noticed a peculiar thing, though, when 
I started talking to people who had played the 
game. They either thought the game was too easy 
or impossible; nobody felt that the level of 
challenge was “just right.” 


Strategically, what Hitler needed were the 
resources of the Soviet Union: the oil, the wheat, 
the industrial facilities, the labor force. 
EASTERN FRONT, I’ll call it (EF), represents this 
by giving points for occupying territory. To quote 


This dichotomy suggests that there is a secret to from the rules, “...maximum victory points are 

winning which one either knows or doesn’t know. gained by moving as many muster strength points 


10 






as far to the east as possible, while destroying as 
many Russian combat strength points as possible 
and pushing the remainder to the east.” In 
addition, 50 points are awarded for the control of 4 
major cities, Moscow being worth 20 and 
Leningrad, Stalingrad and Sevastopol 10 each. 

It sounds pretty straight-forward, until you try 
it and discover that the real problem is not getting 
the points but keeping them. The game opens in 
June and lasts 40 weeks (a turn is one week). There 
are 14 turns of good weather, 4 turns of mud, and 
22 turns of winter. Trying to hang on to your gains 
during the Russian winter counter-attack can be 
one of the most frustrating experiences in 
wargaming! Against a strong Russian force, it is 
utterly impossible. We must therefore find some 
way to weaken this counter-attack. Any unit 
which survives until winter can become strong 
and dangerous; to cease to be a threat a unit must 
cease to exist. 

Having reasoned this much, the solution should 
be apparent. The primary goal must be to destroy 
the Russian army - territory becomes a secondary 
objective in the early stages. If the Russian army 
is eliminated, the Germans can continue to 
advance even in the winter. 

TACTICS: THE HOW OF IT 

Now let us see how our strategic goals affect the 
way we give orders to individual units. In general, 
we want our attacks to eliminate enemy units, not 
just force them to retreat. In EASTERN FRONT, a 
unit will always retreat if it can so the enemy must 
be surrounded or forced up against a coast or the 
edge of the map. To surround a unit, it isn’t 
necessary to encircle it with your units but only 
with zones of control. 

Let me digress a minute to explain zones of 
control for those of you who are wondering. This 
concept, which has been around as long as 
wargaming, is a means of representing a unit’s 
effect on the nearby area. If your army was 
camped between the enemy and a city you were 
supposed to protect, you would not let the enemy 
march around you 20 miles to the north to attack 
the city. As soon as your scouts reported his 
movement, you would prepare to attack his force 
as it moved. Such an attack would force the enemy 
to turn and do battle with you. Your force could be 
said to have a “zone of control” of 20 miles. In 
game terms, whenever an enemy force moves 
within this zone (usually this is “adjacent” on 
whatever grid system the game uses) they must 
stop their movement and resolve combat. 

EASTERN FRONT uses a square grid system. 
This creates a problem in that the squares that are 
adjacent diagonally are further apart, center to 
center, than those that are adjacent orthogonally 


(up, down, left and right). For simplicity, EF does 
not allow diagonal movement but if there is no 
zone of control diagonally, it would take 4 units to 
surround an enemy, one to block each direction it 
could move. This is more than it should take so the 
game invents a “half zone of control.” A half ZOC 
(as they’re called) has no effect by itself, but two 
overlapping half zones block retreat. It is now 
possible to surround a single enemy unit with just 
two of your own; they must be on opposite sides as 
in figure 1. The units block retreat up or down 
and their joint ZOC’s block retreat to either side. 

It should be mentioned, in passing, that getting 
a single unit surrounded may still take more than 
2 of your units, especially if none of your units 
start adjacent to it. The problem is trying to 
predict where it will be by the time your units move 
up. What seems to work best is to try to contain the 
enemy inside of a contracting ring. Once it is 
surrounded by two units, the rest can head for the 
front. You will be much more successful at this if 
you can learn to predict how the computer is likely 
to move. Observation and experience are the keys. 

All well and good if I find an enemy unit all by 
itself, you say, but what if there’s a big line of 
German units facing a big line of Russians? The 
temptation, of course, is to order each unit to 
attack the enemy unit directly in front of it; the 








2.O.C. 

, i 

z.o.c. 

Vz 

z.o.c. 



1 

z.ox. 

UNIT 

A 

1 

z.o.c. 



z.o.c. 

ENEMY, 

. UNIT/ 

O II 

l—l*. 



1 

Z.O.C. 

UNIT 

B 

X 

z.o.c. 



Vz 

z.o.c. 

i 

Z.O.C. 

Z.O.C. 



f 

igure 1. 




11 




problem then is that your line just pushes their 
line back. This is great in football but in EF all it 
gains is a little territory -- just the opposite of our 
strategic plan. What we have to do instead is a 
little uneven pushing as illustrated in figure 2. 




1 






UNIT 

A ' 


Retreat 



UNIT 

D , 

' ' ^ 

UNIT 






UNIT 

C ’ 

1 

Retreat 









figure 2. 


We want to attack every other unit in the line and 
force them back. When our units advance into the 
squares vacated by the retreating enemy they will 
surround the units which are left on the original 
line. The units left become the primary objects of 
attack. Notice that unit B, which starts in front of 
the intended victim, does NOT attack it as this 
would only push it back out of harm’s way before 
units A and C could cut off its escape. We would 
like to be able to delay the frontal attack until A 
and C have advanced and this can be done by a 
trick I call a “deliberate traffic jam.” It works like 
this: unit B gets orders to move to the spot vacated 
by A, unit D has orders to move through the spot 
vacated by B and attack the enemy. Since B can’t 
move until A does and D can’t move until B does, 
we are guaranteed that D will not attack the 
enemy until A does. Of course, B could just as 
easily have moved down into the space vacated by 
C -- you want to choose the side which you expect 
will take the longest to succeed so that both A and 
C will be in place before unit D attacks. 

The presence of enemy units immediately 
behind the unit which you are attacking will block 
its retreat as effectively as you could. The problem, 
of course, is that you can’t control their movement 
- they may not stay there! In figure 2, a unit 
behind those being attacked by A or C will cause 
them to be eliminated instead of retreating. Since 


A or C would still advance into the vacant square, 
this wouldn’t affect the general plan except that 
the timing may be thrown off because it will take 
longer to eliminate a given unit than to force a 
retreat. Some types of terrain -- rivers, mountains, 
swamps -- favor the defender and may also affect 
timing. 

CONCLUSIONS 

The next step is to try it yourself. What you have 
learned here should enable you to get a respectable 
score. Further experience will teach you about 
timing, terrain, supplies, and (probably) over- 
extending yourself. I hope that from now on, as 
your skill grows, you will see a corresponding 
increase in your scores. 





TWO NEW GAMES FROM SSI FOR THE 

niEMlEJKiilSUlH ^ 


^ 


THE BATTLE OF SHILOH: Abrigade-levelsimulationoftheflrstgrand battle oftheOvUVI^. 
pitting the Confederate Army against Grant’s troops and Unkm gunboats. 


TRS'SOi 


We know it hasn't been easy 
for you TRS-80* owners to see so 
many great made-for-Appte-onty 
games from SSI pass you by. But 
thea it hasn’t been easy for us to 
design games f<ar a 16K cassette 
format good enough to rrreet our 
critical standards. 

After all. we’ve got a reputa- 
tion to protect, a reputation in 
strategy g^ing for unsurpassed 
sq3histication, innovatioa realism, 
and playability. 

WelL our designers have been 
hard at work, and we’ve not only 
met but surmounted the challenge 
We’re delighted to announce two 
historical wargames — deserving 
of the SSI label — for both die 
Apple?* and the TRS-80* (16K 
cassette for the TRS-80 Model 1 



TIGERS IN THE SNOW: Ghostlike Nazi 'Tiger tanks and Infontiy sweep across the dark, 
frozen forests of the Ardennes against a surprised U.S. force In ttifedMskm/ regiment-level ; 
simulation of Hitler’s last desperate attack. ■ 


As part of our demanding standards of excellence, we use IHSXBII flc^py discs.1^: 

Apple is a registered trademark of Apple Computer Inc. TRS80 is a registered trademarts of the Tandy Cotporatloa " ■ ■ i v ; 


and III: 48K disc for Apple II with 
Applesoft ROM card). 

Combining our extensive war- 
game-design experience and superior 
programming techniques, we’ve 
given a fresh new look and feel to 
these favorite classic battles. 

At $24.95 each for TRS-80 
cassette and $39.95 each for Apple 
disc these are extraordinary games 
at quite an ordinary price. 

So head on down to your 
local store and check them out 
today! 

VISA and M/C holders can 
order by calling 800-227-1617. 
ext 335 (toll free). In California, 
call 800-772-3545. ext 335. 

To order l:qr mail, send your 
check to: Strategic Simulations Inc 
465 Fairchild Drive, 

Suite 108. Mountain View, 
California 94043. 

All our games carry a 14-day 
mon^back guarantee . v. 





1 




An Interview with Roberta Williams 



TIME ZONE, the long awaited 
multi-disk adventure game from On- 
Line Systems is now out and creat- 
ing considerable interest in the hobby. 
It is an awesome game in terms of 
size and scope. On six-two sided 
diskettes, TIME ZONE is easily the 
largest game program commercial- 
ly available. A game of this mag- 
nitude must, because of sheer size 
alone, become a landmark in the 
computer gaming hobby. As to wheth- 
er the game becomes more than a 
landmark (i.e. a “watershed game” 
or a “classic”) remains to be seen. It 
will be interesting to see how you, 
the buying public, responds to this 
huge and expensive game ($99.95). 

The following interview with the 
authoress, Roberta Williams, was 
held on April 2, 1982 shortly after 
TIME ZONE became available. 


CGW: First off, let me congratu- 
late you for what has obviously been 
a massive project. From the origi- 


nally planned six disk game to the 
final form which is equivalent to 
twelve disks, TIME ZONE is impres- 
sive if for no other reason than it’s 
size and scope. 

RW: (A self-satisfied chuckle). 

CGW: The rulebook states that 
TIME ZONE was over a year in the 
making in addition to the six months 
writing the game before any pro- 
gramming was done. The rulebook 
lists ten people who worked six to 
twelve hours a day on TIME ZONE. 
If I take that literally and put the 
hours together (figuring 200 work- 
ing days in a year) I come to the 
incredible figure of 12,000 to 24,000 
hours of work. How many hours, all 
totaled, went into the design of 
TIME ZONE? 

RW: Actually, those involved in 
the project worked eight hours a 
day. Some of the ten listed did not 
work on the project full time. For 
example, Ken (Williams) wrote the 
original interpreter which is why 


his name appears in the list. He 
never actually did any of the work. 
That part was already done. Jeff 
Stephenson took the original inter- 
preter that Ken had written and 
reworked it to fit TIME ZONE. 
There were a lot of modifications 
that had to be done. Back to your 
question-I worked on the project six 
months by myself, although it wasn’t 
eight hours a day, five days a week. 
It was more like three or four hours a 
day. After the six months of writing 
and designing the game, I worked 
with the others, on-and-off, for the 
next eight months. It was fourteen 
months before it was finally done. 

CGW: As a sidelight, I’d be in- 
terested in knowing what kind of a 
profit you can expect to make off a 
project like TIME ZONE. 

RW: We normally pay 25 to SOFo 
royalties for a game design. But 
TIME ZONE is all in-house and I 
will receive no royalties, as such. 
Remember that TIME ZONE couldn’t 
have been done by one person. It 


couldn’t even have been done by two 
or three people without several 
years work. While I wrote the game 
other people programmed it and did 
the graphics. Sometimes I feel that 
people don’t think that I’m as much 
a part of the creative process as I 
claim, due to the fact that I don’t 
program. The designing of the game 
is the most important and creative 
part of the project (and also the most 
fun). 

CGW: The rulebook mentions 
that a restructuring of your ad- 
venture programming procedures 
had to be accomplished for TIME 
ZONE. What is different about TIME 
ZONE in this respect? 

RW: Several things... The hi res 
pictures in TIME ZONE draw about 
three times faster than in our old 
games. Most of the TIME ZONE 
pictures were drawn by Terry Pierce 
who is a very good artist. On the 
other hand I drew the pictures in my 
older games and I’m not an artist. 

When you take inventory in our 
old games, the disk must be ac- 
cessed, which required a delay. In 
TIME ZONE, inventory is in memo- 
ry and can be seen at the touch of a 
key. Also, the new save game fea- 
ture is more efficient than our old 
one. 

CGW: The game covers points in 
history from the Prehistoric Era to 
the far future. What level does the 
historical aspect of the game reach ? 
Are the historical situations surface 
level or will adventurers find that 
they need to get out their history 
books to solve certain parts of the 
game? 

RW: No, the players will not need 
to get out their history books to play. 
Playing TIME ZONE requires log- 
ical thinking and puzzle solving. I 
did, though, have to do a lot of 
historical research to make the game 
as accurate as possible. We didn’t 
want people to call up and say “Oh, 
you put Cleopatra in the wrong 
time” or anything like that (as it 
turned out I did make one mistake). I 
researched encyclopedias as well as 
books. On a couple of occasions I 
had to call the library to get infor- 
mation I couldn’t find elsewhere. 
For example, I had to make several 
phone calls to find out where Napoleon’s 
official residence was. It turned out 
that he had his official palace in 
Paris. 

CGW: You mentioned that you 
made a mistake in the game. Would 
you tell us what it was? 

RW: It’s more geographical or zoo- 


logical than historical. I put a rhea 
bird in Australia, when it actually 
belongs in South America. The mis- 
take occured because of a trip I made 
to the Los Angeles Zoo. The animals 
are displayed according to the con- 
tinents they come from and the rhea 
bird was in with the kangaroos in 
the Australian area. 

When we found out that the rhea 
bird is not from Australia, the game 
was almost ready to be shipped. It 
would have taken a couple of weeks 
to change it and retest the game. So 
we decided to just add a disclaimer 
in the documentation saying that 
there may be some mistakes. 

CGW: That doesn’t sould like a 
major mistake. We’ll just blame iton 
the L.A. Zoo. 

RW: Yes (laughs). 

CGW: The rulebook mentions 
that in May of 1982 you will be able 
to offer hints on TIME ZONE. Will 
this be strictly by phone or will you 
offer some kind of hint sheet? 

RW: I never liked hint sheets. I 
feel that if the people have the 
answers in front of them they will be 
more likely to look up the answers 
instead of trying to solve the problem 
by themselves. We are quite willing 
to answer questions if people call us 
with specific questions, but we don’t 
want to give out hint sheets. I just 
don’t think people should pay $32 
for The Wizard and the Princess and 
then just be able to look up the 
answer to solve it easily. 

CGW: Do you have any idea for 
the size of the overall vocabulary in 
TIME ZONE? 

RW: Oh, gosh! I’m sure it’s in the 
thousands, although I’m not really 
sure. The average adventure game 
has 50 to 100 rooms, while TIME 
ZONE has 1300 rooms. Some rooms 
or regions have greater opportunity 
for conversation. Some regions re- 
quire a lot of conversation while in 
others there isn’t very much at all. 

CGW: At the present, TIME ZONE 
runs only on the Apple II. Is it going 
to be made available for other com- 
puters ? 

RW: It might become available on 
the Atari 400/800 at some future 
point. The problem with the Atari 
computer at this time is that TIME 
ZONE (with twelve disk sides) takes 
a long time to copy and the Atari 
copy program we have is really slow 
in comparison to the Apple copy 
program. Ken could sit down and 
write a copy program which would 
make it a lot faster if he ever gets 


time to do it. When that happens we 
will put TIME ZONE on the Atari. 
Additionally, TIME ZONE will even- 
tually be available on tbe IBM per- 
sonal computer. 

CGW: What advise would you 
give to potential players of TIME 
ZONE? 

RW: It’s not an easy game. And 
it’s not for beginners. It takes a 
really long time to get through 
TIME ZONE; even for someone who 
knows the answers. If I sit down to 
test TIME ZONE, it takes me a good 
week to go through it one time while 
testing it and I know the answers! 
Make sure you have GOOD maps. 
Use your imagination. Don’t give 
up. It’s going to take a LONG time. 

CGW: Now, the big question. When 
does the sequel come out? 

RW: (Laughs) Never! I am burned 
out on adventure games. I don’t 
even want to look at another one. 
It’s been two years during which 
I’ve written four adventure games 
including TIME ZONE and I am 
really tired. 

CGW: So there’s no plans to ever 
top TIME ZONE. 

RW: I don’t think it could ever be 
topped by anybody. Once we got 
into it and saw how big a job it was, 
we were almost sorry we started it in 
the first place. Now that it’s over. 
I’m glad we did it, but it put a lot of 
strain on our company. It wasn’t 
easy. To me it was akin to making 
an epic movie in the tradition of 
Cecile B. DeMille. You just don’t 
make sequels to things like that. 

CGW: So, as far as you’re con- 
cerned, TIME ZONE is something 
which might be looked back upon at 
some future time as a classic of it’s 
day. 

RW : I hope so. That would be nice. 

CG W: Is there anything you would 
like to add to what you’ve told us so 
far? 

RW: Yes. I feel that TIME ZONE 
is going to teach people certain 
things about history. I know that 
some people will learn things they 
never knew when they play the 
game. Every now and then I threw 
in certain historical facts that had 
nothing to do with playing the 
game, just to help teach them. In the 
back of my mind I always thought 
that TIME ZONE could be used as a 
learning tool for teaching history in 
schools. Some schools are using 
adventure games to teach kids how 
to think logically. In a way I like to 
think that it makes history fun.M 


15 




VOVnGCR I: 

. Sabotage 
^ of the Robot Ship 

by Dave Jones 





BASIC INFORMATION 

NAME: 

Voyager I 

TYPE: 

3-D Maze Game 

SYSTEM: 

Apple, Atari, Pet, TRS-80 

FORMAT: 

Disk or Tape 

# PLAYERS: 

1 

AUTHOR: 

William Volk 

PRICE: 

Tape ($20); Disk ($25) 

PUBLISHER: 

Avalon Hill Game Co. 

4517 Harford Road 
Baltimore, MD 21214 
301-254-5300 


Alone and unarmed, you stand in the corridor of 
the alien space craft Voyager. Around you, lurking 
in the corridors that riddle the interior of the ship, 
lie in wait deadly, laser wielding robot guardians. 
As the only survivor of an assault squad that 
penetrated the outer hull of the space craft, you 
alone must carry out the mission of the squad to 
track down and destroy the robot guardians 
of the ship, or, in failing that, to destroy the 
generators which power the ship. 

Welcome to VOYAGER I, the latest Avalon Hill 
entry into the micro-gaming arena. This real-time, 
science-fiction game takes place within the corridors 
of the alien space craft Voyager. The object of the 
game is to travel the corridors of the ship to seek 
out and destroy all the robot guardians; or the ship’s 
generators which will cause the ship to self-destruct. 
Scattered throughout the craft are objects that can 
help the player such as lasers and space shuttles, 
as well as elevators which will transport the 
player between levels. All commands are entered 
through the keyboard, and allow the player to 
move through the corridors, change facing, travel 
between levels on the elevators, pick up, fire, and 
charge lasers, and examine the map. A running 
score is kept at the bottom of the screen, although 


the scoring method is not described in the game 
handbook. 

When booted, the game spends about 5 minutes 
randomly setting up the layout of the ship. During 
play, a three-dimensional picture of the corridor in 
which the player is facing is drawn on 3/4 of the 
screen. As the player moves or turns, the screen 
is redrawn (with surprising speed) to reflect his 
new position or orientation. Objects which occupy 
rooms, such as elevators, shuttles, robots, and 
lasers, also appear on the screen. Bar charts, 
representing the status of the player’s strength 
points, the laser’s power charge, and the ship’s 
generator power are drawn to the right of the 
viewing screen. Strength points are diminished by 
moving or turning, laser charges by firing, and the 
generator power every time an additional generator 
is destroyed. Resting between moves will cause 
strength points to accumulate, while lasers can be 
recharged at generators. 

A nice feature of the game is the automatic 
mapping that occurs as the player traverses the 
halls. At any time, by typing M, the player can see 
a map of the areas of the ship he has visited, his 
current location and facing, the location of any 
objects he has encountered, and the number of 
robots remaining. By hitting C, the player returns 
to his prior location within the ship. 



Continued on page 38 


16 





Johnson 

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.» *» .•h»'»“»'* hr».rt* P““ 


^ ■h»r*c>*n' ' 

'*•’*' ‘rr^t.r .o'*'"*''"* 




There are two possibilities. Either 
you will like THE SPACE GAMER, 
or you won’t. 


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If you’d like to read up-to-date 
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. . . strategy hints . . . insights into 
where the computer game hobby is 
going . . . and a wide assortment of 
other science fiction and fantasy 
game coverage . . . then you’ll like 
TSG. Otherwise, you probably 
won’t — in which case you should 
quit reading this ad. 

Still with us? Good. THE SPACE 
GAMER appears monthly. Subscrip- 
tions are $21.00 for one year, or 
$39.00 for two years. Canadian 
subscribers, please add $5 per year. 

Send your check or money order 
to TSG, Box 18957-CG, Austin, 
Texas 78760. 














The announcement of a new computer game 
from Atari is a relatively rare happening. When 
one does arrive on the scene, as most recently 
ASTEROIDS and MISSILE COMMAND did, it is 
an exciting event. Atari game software from third 
party sources, on the other hand, is now issued 
almost daily. Computer store shelves are bulging 
with new programs on both tape and disk. There 
is, indeed, so much new software that the Atari 
computer owner must discriminate carefully be- 
tween game programs that are “musts”, those 
that are somewhat mediocre, and unfortunately, a 
few that are downright malodorous. 

Determining which programs are good and 
which are not worth buying is not an easy task. 
Sometimes programs that promise the most or 
cost the most deliver the least. Here are some rules 
of thumb: 1 ) never buy a program sight unseen, no 
matter how it’s hyped; 2) don’t try to judge a 
program by its packaging or cost; 3) ask some one 
who has played the game; 4) read the reviews in 
magazines like this one to get an idea of what to 
expect from this growing market. 

This month we will examine more examples of 
programs from new third-party sources-games 
that utilize some of the Atari’s powerful graphics 
capabilities. 

First, an update is in order on Mike Potter’s 
PROTECTOR, reviewed in issue 2.1, of CGW. In 
that issue I stated that the game was flawed by a 
few mysterious bugs that soured a promising 
game. W ell, that mystery has been solved. It seems 
that Mr. Potter switched companies in mid-program, 
so to speak-when initially issued, the program 
was unfinished. Ethics of this aside, a much more 
polished version of PROTECTOR is now avail- 
able from Synapse Software. This version does a 
lot more and costs less too. Mike Potter displays 
real virtuosity on the Atari. I can’t wait to see 
what’s next from him. 

Along with Chris Crawford’s EASTERN 
FRONT, the Atari Pr( >gram Exchange now offers 
CAVERNS OF MARS, a delightful arcade game 
somewhat reminiscent of SCRAMBLE. In this 
game you descend into the bowels of Mars, 
blasting enemy transmitters, fuel depots, and 
missiles. If you survive the descent, you can land 
on and activate the nuclear device that will 


by John J. Anderson 

destroy the cavern. But then you’ve got to move 
quickly to escape the cavern before it blows. 

The really remarkable thing about this addic- 
tive and excellently paced game is that it was 
written by an eighteen year-old amateur, Greg 
Christensen. It has all the look, feel, and play of a 
“professional” program. I understand ATARI is 
considering release of the game under its own 
name. This would be a well-deserved compliment 
to Mr. Christensen. 

KAYOS, by Computer Magic Ltd., is well 
named, as it pushes hand-eye coordination to the 
outer limits. Although the game revolves around a 
rather simple and unchanging concept, it is in no 
way simple to master. A ship cruises from left to 
right across the top of the screen, while you hover 
at the bottom. When you hit a ship, another shape 
will appear on the screen for a few seconds. This 
shape is the only item of real point value in the 
game, and is not easy to hit. During the game, 
space debris flies at you constantly. Some of it you 
can ignore, some you can vaporize, some you can 
only dodge-if you’re fast enough. 

Some people do not like this one because, in their 
words, “it drives you nuts.” But therein lies its 
truely addictive quality. This is the kind of game 
that sweeps you into an altered state-after six or 
seven games your head spins when you try to get 
up. The sound effects are hypnotic, and when it 
ends, you can feel the jolt. 

What happens when you mix an “adventure- 
style” game with an “arcade-style” game? J-V 
Software attempts an answer to this question with 
ACTION QUEST. Rather than entering coded or 
text commands, as one would expect with a 
conventional adventure program, this game is 
played solely with joystick and trigger. Each room 
poses a new challenge and a new puzzle, as you 
attempt to collect all the treasures in the shortest 
time. If you successfully complete a level of rooms, 
you arrive at the next, more difficult, level. The 
play-value of this program won’t diminish until 
you’ve reached the thirtieth room, which shall 
take quite some time to accomplish this. 

In the next ATARI ARCADE: KRAZY SHOOT- 
OUT, the first third party ROM cartridge for the 
Atari computer, and REAR GUARD, from Adven- 
ture International. n 


SoftSide is a favorite of computer users and hobbyists aiike. They reiy on it as a 
prime source of programs, reviews and articles for the Apple™, ATARI®, and TRS- 
80® microcomputers. 

SoftSide is the magazine for the microcomputer owner who wants to learn BASIC 
programming, learn MORE about BASIC programming, or just wants to have FUN! 

SoftSide gives you the BASIC code listings of several programs — adventures, 
utilities, games, simulations, you name it — for your computer EVERY MONTH. 

Use coupon below to order. Mail to: SoftSide Publications, 6 South St., Milford, 
NH 03055. 


Adventures to choose from: i 

I 
I 



Alien Adventure 

You are the sole survivor of a crew on 
a mission to deiiver a cargo of oii to 
Earth. A crash ianding has ieft you 
stranded on a smaii pianet, harshiy 
aiien but rich in iead, goid and 
piatinum. You must find provisions 
and a means of ieaving the planet. But 
beware of the THING that massacred 
your crew! 


Jack The Ripper Adventure 

Jack the Ripper is running rampant in 
London and you must stop him! 
Scotland Yard demands that you take 
action, and the only answer is to set 
yourself up as a decoy. Be careful how 
you plan your costume, or dear Jack 
will laugh hysterically and leave you in 
the dust! 



□ YES ! Send me a FREE Adventure with 
my subscription to SoftSide at the special offer 
of $24 yr. for 12 issues ($12 savings over news- 
stand price.) 

Please specify which computer 

□ Apple (req. 24K for tape, 32K for disk) 

□ ATARI® (req. 32K for tape, 40K for disk) 

□ TRS-80® (req. 16K for tape, 32K for disk) 

Check one: □ Disk □ Cassette 
Adventures: (check one) 

□ Alien □ Jack The Ripper 


Name 


Address 

City/State 

Zip 

□ Check/Money Order 

Name of Cardholder 

□ MasterCard □ VISA 

Card # 


Signature 

Please allow 6-8 weeks for delivery 

Apple*rM, ATARI® and TRS-60* are registered trademarks of The Apple Com- 
puter Company. Warner Communications and The Tandy Corporation 
respectively. 


Offer Expires June 30, 1982* 



SOME SCENES FROM THE 
7TH WEST COAST 

COMPUTER FAIRE 



20 



1 . A view of the main fioor. Most companies were on 
the Brooks Mali ievel (one ievei down). 

2. Russeii Sipe (editor of CGW) and Suzanne Sipe 
(head of operations). “Suck in your beliy” she said. 
“I am” he whispered back. 

3. Bruce Webster, Siiicon Cerebrum author. 

4. Bob Proctor, one of our most proiific writers. 


8. Scott Adams at the Adventure International booth. 

9. Paul “Warp Factor” Murray (left) and Joel Billings 
at the Strategic Simulations booth. 

10. Chris Crawford of Atari Computer. 

11. John Lyon of Strategic Simulations. 

12. Left to Right: Mike Abbot, Russell Selph and Jim 
Nitchals of Cavalier Computer. 


5. Will Clardy of Synergistic Software. 

6. The gang at On-Line. From the left: Lord British, 
Ken Williams, John “Don’t get the red in my blood 
shot eyes” Williams, Paul Malachowski, and Kevin 
Cooper. 

7. Goshilla (alias Chris Moehrke) finds a morsel to 
his liking in Joyce Lane, advertising director at 
Automated Simulations. 


13. Dave Gordon (right) and Norm Baker, big 
wheels at Data Most. 

14. Detail of the Adventure International booth. 

15. A crowd at the Sirius Software booth. 

16. Ted “Quick, snap the picture, I can’t be charming 
all day” Gillam of TG Products. 

17. The Adventure International booth. 


21 





Gaming by phone is nothing new. Due to 
advances in telecommunications, national net- 
works are rapidly becoming more popular. Al- 
though there are many networks, most are special 
interest, and have only a couple of phone numbers 
in the country-the major cost is the phone bill for 
these. There are two general purpose networks 
open to nearly everyone-Compuserve and The 
Source. Both provide a much broader area of 
service than simply games, but this article will 
concentrate principally upon their games. 

Signing up is fairly simple-for The Source, see a 
large (or even reasonably sized) computer dealer. 
The biggest disadvantage to The Source is the 
one-time sign-up fee of (gasp) $100. However, I feel 
it is well worth it. You must write CompuServe to 
get their service (5000 Arlington Centre Boule- 
vard, Columbus, Ohio 43220). For a fee, they will 
give you an account number and password which 
allows you to hook up. You will need, at the very 
least, a terminal and a modem. Though, you may 
need more, depending on your own system. The 
Source is more expensive, but I haven’t heard 
anyone yet who, having used both systems, 
preferred CompuServe. After the sign-up, the two 
networks are approximately equal in cost. 

There are many games duplicated (or very 
similar) on both networks. These are: Adventure 
(the clasic Crowther and Woods); Blackjack; Civil 
War (a simulation); Mastermind; Football; Golf; 
Hangman; Lunar Lander; Star Trek; Backgammon; 
Craps; Chess; Hammurabi (where you get to be the 
ruler of an ancient civilization-planting crops, 
and feeding the population); Maze (generation) 
and Wumpus (hunt it-bats, pits, and the wumpus). 

In addition, CompuServe has the following 
game programs: New Advent (A 750 point version 
of Adventure); Fantasy (a game I had trouble 
finding how to play-it appears to be some kind of 
adventure or war game); Gomoku; Space War; 
Concentration; Cube Solver (a real sanity aid); 
Furs (fur trading in eighteenth-century Canada); 
Dec wars; Real- Time Trek; Scramble; Scott Adam ’s 
Adventure; Othello; Pirates and my favorite 
advice column-Aunt Nettie. 


The Source has Blackdragon (Wizardry-type 
game); Super Blackjack; Bridge; Poker; Checkers; 
Farmer; Splgam (A spelling quiz); King (rule the 
Setats Detinu. A modern version of Hammurabi); 
Horse Race; Iching; Iqtest; Life (keep your colonies 
alive); Market (market a product); Nim; Nim2; 
Watchman; Pica; Pits (another adventure-type 
game); Sumer; Scorefour; Sinners (lots of fun!! Try 
and get the three devils in a line); Slalom; Onearm 
(a slot machine game); Sonnet; Dates; Adv550 (A 
550 point version of Adventure with an improved 
command parser); Target Practice; Qubic; Estic 
(Tic Tac Toe in Spanish); Toro; and (whew!!) 
Vegas. 

In addition to the games they already have, both 
are open to new ones. Also, many users are 
dedicated gamers (computer and otherwise)-there 
are tons of Wizardry players listed in the User 
Directory on The Source. 

In addition to traditional games. The Source has 
Post-basically a classified bulletin board. Cat- 
egories of interest here are: Apple, Atari, Chatter 
(lots of strange stuff in this one!!). Clubs, Fairs- 
and-Festivals, Games, Heath, Hobbies-and- 
Crafts, Hug (Heath Users Group), IBM, NEC, 
Osborne, OSI, PET, Puzzles, Sayings, TRS-80. 
There are many more categories, with more on the 
way. 

Also, The Source has C(iat-lots of fun. Chat is a 
command that lets you talk with another user. You 
can find out who is currently on the system by 
typing Online. Then, you can chat with someone 
by typing Chat followed by their account number. 
There are also ways of blocking out Chat in case 
you don’t want to be bothered by motor-mouths 
(fingers??). 

There are many possibilities in gaming via 
modem. The only real disadvantage (other than 
cost and baud rate) is that the network cannot take 
advantage of a particular machine unless it only 
caters to that machine. Thus, graphics are 
something we may never see on remote games, 
nevertheless, the games are enjoyable, and the 
networks puts you in touch with gamers you might 
not have known otherwise. |g| 


22 




PERSONAL-TO-PERSONM. 


0 ' 

• V 


ITH 

dl] 





A Hayes modem 
makes it possible. 

Your personal computer could be do- 
ing a lot more for you. It could be communi- 
cating over ordinary telephone lines with 
any location in North America . . . any time 
of the day or night. With the help of a Hayes 
modem (Smartmodem™ Micromodem IT" 
and Micromodem 100*), you can send 
and receive reports from your home or 
office, and exchange messages or pro- 
grams with personal computer owners 
hundreds of miles away. You can even 
get the stock reports, today's Washington 
Post, airline schedules and movie reviews 
by subscribing to one of several informa- 
tion utilities. The possibilities seem end- 
less. Modems are clearly the way of the 
future. And Hayes leadsthe way— today 

Smartmodem is a smart buy. ^ 
When it comes to features and per- 
formance, Smartmodem tops the 
300-baud modem market. With the 
Smartmodem, your IBM Personal inH 
Computer, TRS-80 Model ll)“ 

XEROX 820 - or any computer 


with RS-232C I/O — can communicate 
with all other computers using Bell 103- 
type modems. Smartmodem can answer 
calls, dial numbers, receive and transmit 
data, and disconnect. . . all automatically. 

Many cheaper modems connect to 
a telephone receiver, which can cause 
distortions and transmission losses. 
Smartmodem plugs right into 
your telephone jack ... no phone f T 
needed! And thanks to an internal I A 
speaker, you can actually listen I ▼ 
to your connection being made. 

That way you’ll know immediately if the line 
is busy or if you reached a wrong number. 

No wonder Smartmodem is, well, a 




smart modem. And it stacks neatly atopother 
Hayes peripherals, like the Hayes Stack 
Chronograph^" RS-232C calendar/clock, 

M icromodem II . . . exclusively for 
Apple II " owners. The same quality and 
automatic features associated with Hayes 
Smartmodem are built right in the Hayes 
3s. direct-connect Micromodem II. It's easy 

m to see why more Apple II owners choose 
■ ■ Hayes Micromodem 

II than any other 

I ICly modem in the world. 

^ Don't settle for 

anything less than Hayes. . .Smartmodem, 
Micromodem II and Micromodem 100 for 
S-100 bus computers. Available at com- 
puter stores nationwide. 

Put your personal 
computer on the line! 

I'm ready to talk! Please send info on: 

□ Smartmodem FI Micromodem 100 

□ Micromodem II [ ] Chronograph 



MAIL TO: Hayes Microcomputer Products 
^ 5835 Peachtree Corners East 
^ Norcross, Georgia 30092 
^ OR CALL: (404) 449-8791 


Smartmodem, Chronograph. Micromodem II and Micromodem 100 are Irademarks ol Hayes Microcompuler Producis. Inc. © 1982 Hayes Microcomputer Products, Inc. TRS-80 Model II isa Irade- 
mark ol Radio Shack. XEROX' and 820 are Irademarks of XEROX CORPORATION. Apple II is a trademark of Apple Computer. Inc. 




The most critical component in a board game is 
the board. The most difficult component of a board 
game to simulate (not just represent) on a computer 
is the board; especially if the program has to be 
able to “read” it in order to move or place units. I 
ran into these principals when, for a graduate 
class in artificial intelligence, I was required to 
write a program which would play GO against 
other programs. The board in GO is simplicity 
itself -- a rectangular grid, with non-moving black 
and white stones placed on the intersections - and 
yet it was extremely difficult to get my program to 
“see” moves and patterns that were immediately 
apparent to my novice glance. 

The same problems exist with almost all games 


involving a map or board of any sort. It is often 
called the “Cyclops” problem, referring to the 
computer’s ability to see only one small section 
(hex, square, intersection) of the board at a time, 
while we blithely take the whole thing in at a 
glance. Patterns and situations which are obvious 
to us can be amazingly difficult for a computer 
program to “perceive.” And so we must develop 
certain tools and techniques to help our programs 
to see just what’s happening. 

INFLUENCE MAPPING 

Since it is easy for a program to examine one 
map location at a time, one solution to the Cyclops 
problem is to somehow put information about the 
entire map into each location. In other words, each 
location would contain a value or values that let 
the program know something about that location 
with respect to the entire board. 

One such technique has been developed for the 
game of GO (Uhr, 1973; Zobrist, 1969). GO is a 
highly visual game. In it, players must carefully 
scrutinize the board in order to detect both global 
and local patterns and influences.. .precisely the 
type of effort with which computers have so much 
trouble. Zobrist, in trying to create a program to 
play GO, used a simple but effective method for 
what he called “perceptual grouping,” i.e., being 
able to “see” how the groups of stone influenced 
one another. His program uses another array the 
same size as the board (19 by 19). First, it sets all 
locations equal to zero. It then places a positive 
value (50) in each location corresponding to a 
black stone and a negative value (-50) in each 
corresponding to a white stone. The program then 
makes a new copy of the array, with each new 
location receiving its old value modified by the 
four locations adjacent to it. The value is increased 
by one for each adjacent location containing a 
positive (non-zero) value and decreased by one for 
each adjacent location containing a negative 
value. The new array becomes the old one, and the 
update process is repeated several times. 

This technique produces an array showing how 
much influence each side - black and white - has 
on a given location. The sign of the number 
indicates who is controlling it (black is positive; 
white, negative), while the magnitude shows how 
strong is the control. Values close to zero show 
locations that neither side really controls. Portions 
of the map containing adj acent locations all of the 
same sign indicate territories controlled by a 
given side, while adjacent locations of different 
signs show boundaries between such territories. 
Finally, counting all the locations on the board of 
a given sign shows just how much on the entire 
map each side controls. 


24 




USE IN WARGAMES 

I’ve been playing around with this method to see 
how much it could help with computer wargames, 
and I think that it could be very useful. Here’s an 
example. Figure 1 shows an extremely simple 
wargame-like situation. Terrain, ranged combat, 
and unit types have been ignored for the sake of 
simplicity. Each side has the same number of 
pieces, all of which have an equal amount of 
influence. For the sake of discussion, let’s call the 
units which point to the left “bosons” and those 
that point to the right, “quarks”. 



Firure 1. 

As you examine the board, a number of points 
come to your attention. The bosons in the lower 
right corner have what looks to be a fairly strong 
position. The quarks also have a fairly tight for- 
mation and appear to have walled the bosons into 
a relatively small area of the board. Finally, the 
boson in the upper right corner has been cut off 
from the rest of his group and is not in a very 
strong position at all. 

Y ou probably had very little trouble extracting 
this information from Figure 1. Indeed, most of it 
would have been apparent at a glance. Think of 
how difficult it would be to get a program to “see” 
all that! And yet that information would be very 
valuable in helping the program to decide what to do 
next. 

Figure 2 shows the results of applying the 
perceptual grouping algorithm to the same situation. 
Each location containing a boson was given a value 
of 50, while each quark location was set to -50; all 
others were set to zero. The only difference is that 
each location here has six neighbors, not just four. 
The update portion of the algorithm was executed 
five times, which was enough to show boundaries 
between quark and boson territory but not enough 
to extend the quark territory all the way to the left 
side of the board. 



As you can see, this very simple method confirms 
our three observations. The main group of bosons 
have a strong position but control little territory 
compared to the quarks. All of the quarks are 
secure, and the boson in the upper right corner is 
indeed cut off from the others. It also shows that 
the uppermost boson of the main group is in an 
exposed position. It has the lowest location value 
of all the bosons, and the hexes to the left and right 
of it are pretty much “up for grabs.” 

CONCLUSIONS 

This technique is easily implemented - 1 wrote a 
quick-and-dirty version of it for this article in just 
an hour or two - but from it two questions arise. 
First, in what ways can a program use this 
information? Second, what about factors like 
terrain, movement, combat, and unit differentia- 
tion? Well, those are precisely the questions I plan 
to cover in the next few columns. In the meantime, 
if you have additional questions or would like 
actual program listings, feel free to write. If you 
want listings, be sure to state what language 
you’re using (BASIC, FORTH, Pascal, an assembly 
language, etc.), and I’ll try to tailor my response to 
fit your needs. I can be reached at: 

Bruce F. Webster 
9264 Grossmont Blvd. 

La Mesa, CA 92041. 

REFERENCES 

UHR, LEONARD, Pattern Recognition, Learning, 
and Thought. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice- 
Hall, 1973. Chapter 12 discusses GO and Zobrist’s 
approach. 

ZOBRIST, A. L., “A model of visual organization 
for the game of GO,” AFIPS Conf. Proc., 1969, 34, 
103-112. 


25 





To scroll across the monitor of life... 


99 


JABBERTALKY, IN DEPTH 



BASIC 

INFORMATION 

NAME: 

Jabbertalky 

TYPE: 

Programmable 

Word Game 

SYSTEM: 

Apple II; TRS-80 

FORMAT: 

Disk (Both); Tape (TRS-80) 

# PLAYERS: 

1-6 

AUTHOR: 

Norman D. Lane; Bernie 
DeKoven 

PRICE: 

$29.95 

PUBLISHER: 

Automated Simulations 

P.O. Box 4247 

Mountain View, CA 94040 


When Lewis Carroll first published Through the 
Looking Glass in 1871, 1 am sure that even in his 
wildest dreams, he never imagined that his 
nonsense poem about the “Jabberwock” would, 
more than 100 years later, form the story line for 
an educational computer game. JABBERTALKY 
is Automated Simulations’ programmable word 
game, published under their new label. Mind Toys. 

The story begins with young Alice as she boots 
the game diskette and is transported to the realm 
of Jabbertalky, with the Jabbertalker as her guide. 


by Marty Halpern 

Immediately she is confronted with “The Great 
Door” and must choose which land to enter -- Free 
Verse, Alphagrammar, Cryptogrammar, or Jab- 
bergrammar. 

Choosing what she hopes will be the safest, 
Alice enters Free Verseland. It is here that Alice 
must make her second decision, whether or not to 
choose a special vocabulary. Being the beginner 
that she really is, Alice decides not to do anything 
“special” just yet. 

(Note: In an earlier interview with the Jabber- 
talker, I learned that there are, in fact, three 
vocabularies from which to choose -- General, 
Headline, and Vocab. To choose no special 
vocabulary is the same as choosing Vocab, for this 
is the language in which the J abbertalker normally 
speaks. Hint; The three vocabularies are text files; 
selecting any other file from the catalog will bomb 
the program and the disk will have to be re-booted. 
Also, to load any one of these vocabularies 
requires nearly two full minutes so the Jabber- 
talker advises the player to have patience while 
the disk drive whirs and stops, whirs and stops...) 

This is indeed a time for decisions as Alice is 
faced with another question. She must now select 
the level of difficulty of the game, ranging from 
“1” to “8” (most difficult). Remembering once 
again that she is just a beginner, Alice chooses 
Level 1. 

Immediately the monitor goes blank, and then 
words begin to appear as the Jabbertalker writes 


26 




out his very silly, illogical (though always 
grammatically correct) sentences. By increasing 
the level of difficulty of the game, Alice learns that 
the vocabulary and sentence structure also in- 
crease in difficulty. In fact, by the time the 
Jabbertalker reaches Level 8, he is simply beside 
himself and gushes forth with this sentence: “In 
the weapon of the parent’s only deceiver is the 
noblest kernel of doom.” 

Whew! Tiring of all this nonsense, Alice inter- 
rupts the Jabbertalker by hitting the space bar 
and once again finds herself before “The Great 
Door.” 

This time Alice chooses Alpha Grammarland, 
as she types in the appropriate key. The screen 
changes, and before her eyes appear a series of 
blotches and spaces in a kind of pattern. Above the 
blotches are letters (all in alphabetical order), and 
above each letter is a number. Alice thought and 
thought and then realized that Alpha Grammar is 
a lot like the game “Hangman” which she played 
when she was much younger. The Jabbertalker 
has provided her with a sentence pattern and she 
must fill in the blotches with the correct letters 
from those given. When a letter is placed in its 
proper space within the sentence, it is removed 
from the listing above. The Jabbertalker even 
keeps track of the incorrect letters Alice trys so 
that time isn’t wasted by trying the same letter 
more than once. 



2 1 6 2 1 ,3 3 1 1 3 31 2 2 

A-C- E- -H- - - L-NOP-R-TUV- - YZ 


III III Hill nil III III III Him 



(Note: The Jabbertalker, old and wise as he is, 
has no need to worry about time. But, he does 
make the player work against time, starting at 
“10” and decreasing. However, the Jabbertalker 
informed me that the player could simply ignore 
the time, because when time runs out it auto- 
matically restarts at “10” and decreases again 
and again. This will, of course, affect your score, 
but then who’s counting anyway.) 

Finally, Alice completes her very first Alpha 
Grammar sentence. It took much longer than she 
had thought, but she knew that practice would 


increase her speed as she became more familiar 
with the Jabbertalker ’s vocabulary. With these 
thoughts of confidence dancing in her head, Alice 
ventured forth into Cryptogrammarland. 

However, the journey from this point on will 
become rather difficult for young Alice. So, as not 
to discourage her in continuing her discoveries, we 
will leave her at this point and press on ourselves... 

In Cryptogrammar, we are confronted with 
sentences in which each letter of the alphabet is 
substituted for another letter. At Level 1, for 
example, you might see a sentence that looks like 
this: 

LF VHMMHXVG ODUGDJ HV FDCJ 
QQHXVG QXG. 

Pressing the “S” key calls up the question - 
“Swap which two letters?”-and in this manner 
the player begins deciphering the sentence. 
Swapping an “H” for an “I” will change all “H’s” 
in the sentence to “Fs” and vice versa. Should you 
try to swap an incorrect pair of letters, the 
Jabbertalker will be most happy to inform you 
that you are “wrong”, but at the first level only! 
Beyond that, he will let you swap whatever pairs 
of letters you wish, no matter how silly the swap 
turns out to be. 

(Hint: At Level 1, at least, keep a written list of 
all correct swaps. If you swap an “H” for an “I” 
and then later forget that you made this swap, the 
Jabbertalker will let you swap back the “I” for an 
“H”. Remember, it is still a correct swap but you 
will end up back where you started. Beyond Level 
1, however, you are on your own.) 

At the higher levels of difficulty, the Jabber- 
talker becomes even more cryptic. Two additional 
command keys become available, “F” (Flip) and 
“M” (Move). When the cursor is placed at the 
beginning of a word and the “F” key is depressed, 
the word is reversed. For example, if the 
deciphered word is “REYWAL,” the “F” key will 
flip it to “LAWYER”. Also, there is a distinct 
possibility that a space or two might be missing 
from a sentence. This means that what appears to 
be a very long word may turn out to be two smaller 
words (and one of them may be flipped, too!). 
Pressing the “M” key will add a space wherever 
the cursor is positioned within the sentence. 

Of course, the more difficult levels use a more 
challenging vocabulary, and don’t forget that the 
time keeps running, too. In the end, should you 
give up on a cryptogram and seek the Jabber- 
talker’s help, simply press the “ESCape” key and 
he will reveal the true answer. This will work for 
any Alphagram, too. 

(Note: In both Alphagrammar and Cryptogrammar, 
the player has the option to review the many 
vocabulary lists from which the sentences are 


27 


constructed, as an aid in deciphering the 
sentences. However, I found this to be of little help. 
If you believe the word you seek is a noun, then 
there are four lists (more, if you choose a special 
vocabulary) to review, each list containing a 
dozen or so words. Knowing the first letter of the 
word will, of course, narrow down the words from 
which to choose. Also, if one is indeed playing 
against the clock, this process is most time 
consuming.) 

Oh! Yes. The solution to the aforementioned 
cryptogram sentence is: 

MY SILLIEST DOCTOR IS YOUR HAPPIEST 
PET. 

And finally, to enter Jabber grammar land is to 
enter the home of the Jabbertalker, for it is here 
that we find the necessary tools for creating our 
own special vocabulary. 

The instruction booklet follows Alice step by 
step as she creates her own vocabulary, entitled 
Headline. I found some of the steps to be a bit 
steep, so beware of stumbling.... The player may 
want to load Headline from the game diskette and 
experiment with the editing commands to become 
familiar with this particular mode. 

(Note: Alice is a VERY contemporary individual, 
for she is both socially and politically aware. Her 
Headline vocabulary, at the higher levels of dif- 


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ficulty, contains such words as “Spokesperson,” 
“Gay lib,” “ERA,” “Abortion,” “PLO,” “ABSCAM,” 
and “Marijuana.” Indeed, “Headline” is a most 
apropos title for such a vocabulary.) 

Now, to create one’s own vocabulary. Enter the 
“Edit Vocabulary” mode of Jabbergrammar and you 
will see a listing of all the editing commands at the 
top of your screen. The “Show List” command will 
reveal any word or syntax list of your choosing. 
Each letter of the alphabet represents a word list, 
and each number from “0” through “9”, a syntax 
list. In the case of Headline, an “A ’’will call up the 
listof'T/imgs”, whereas “J5”represents “Acts”, and 
“7” is “Noun Phrases (Person).” 

Getting started on a new vocabulary: Select List 
“A” and the Jabbertalker will reply that the list is 
“empty”. Now, begin Inserting appropriate words 
for that list. You can choose any level of difficulty, 
between “1 ” and “8”, for each word. If you do not 
enter a specific level of difficulty for a word, the 
J abbertalker will automatically enter it as Level 1 . 
Also, all words are automatically alphabetized 
within each level in a list. If you make an error, or 
simply wish to remove a particular word from a 
list, there is a Delete command for this purpose. 

(Hint: The words contained in each list MUST 
be of the same class - nouns, verbs, adjectives, etc. 
- for your vocabulary to be successful.) 

A Print option is available for producing a 
hardcopy of your special vocabulary. There is also 
a Save option for saving your special vocabulary 
on the disk. Unfortunately, no provision exists for 
creating a separate text file diskette. 

(Hint: J ust before saving your special vocabulary, 
remove the game diskette from the disk drive and 
insert an initialized blank diskette. You can save 
and call up your special vocabulary in this 
manner.) 

Should you choose to save your special vocabulary 
on the game diskette itself, there is no option for 
deleting the vocabulary except word by word, list 
by list. 

But don’t think you are finished now, you’ve still 
got a long way to go. The Jabbertalker does NOT 
create sentences from your vocabulary alone, you 
must also give him the sentence structures. After 
creating your vocabulary, you must then create 
master sentence patterns and phrases - the syntax 
lists! For example, a master pattern might be 

1/A/I/ B/ISA/3/./ 

The “/” key is used to tell the Jabbertalker where 
to punctuate, when to add possessive, prefixes, 
suffixes, etc. Anything given between the slashes 
will be printed as is. This is also how words like 
“the”, “an”, “is”, and “a”are added to sentences. 

Continued on p. 37 


28 








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THE GREATEST BASEBALL 

TEAM OF ALL TIME - 

TOURNAMENT RESULTS 



THE RESULTS 

In our first issue (Nov. -Dec. 1981 - 1.1) we 
announced a computer baseball tournament to 
determine the greatest team in history. Called 
THE GREATEST BASEBALL TEAM OF ALL 
TIME (GBTOAT) TOURNAMENT it pitted eight 
great teams of the past in a contest to determine 
which was the best. A book entitled COMPUTER 
SPORTS MATCHUPS (by Julian E. Compton, 
Tempo Books, 1981, $2.50) held a similar tour- 
nament in which the 1927 Yankees came away 
winners. The GBTOAT tournament uses the same 
teams as Compton’s book (i.e. 27 Yanks, 31 
Athletics, 48 Indians, 61 Yanks, 55 Dodgers, 36 
Yanks, 34 Cards, 76 Reds). Our readers were 
encouraged to use either SSI’s COMPUTER 
BASEBALL or Avalon Hill’s MAJOR LEAGUE 
BASEBALL to play the tournament. 

After playing the tournament in the offices at 
CGW I can attest that there is a LOT of work 
involved. I am pleased therefore, that three other 
readers took the time to play the tournament out to 
conclusion (other readers started but never fin- 
ished). Here are the results. 

COMPUTER GAMING WORLD’S 
REPLAY OF GBTOAT TOURNEY 

The first match up of round I saw the 1931 
Philadelphia Athletics knock off the favored 1927 
New York Yankees 4-2. Babe Ruth hit three 
homers but one was in a rained out game and thus 
did not count. 

31 ATHLETICS VS. 27 YANKEES 


#1- 

N.Y. 

10 

PHIL. 

6 

#2- 

N.Y. 

10 

PHIL 

3 

#3- 

PHIL. 

8 

N.Y. 

6 

#4- 

PHIL 

6 

N.Y. 

5 

#5- 

PHIL. 

8 

N.Y. 

7 

#6- 

PHIL. 

12 

N.Y. 

8 


Baiting Leaders: 

Avg.— Earle Combs (NY) .518 
HR- Babe Ruth (NY) 2 
Jimmie Foxx (Ph| 2 


Also in first round action, the 1948 Indians 
defeated the 1961 Yankees. Roger Maris hit two 
game-winning home runs in a losing cause. 


48 INDIANS VS. 61 YANKEES 


#1- CLEV. 

9 

N.Y. 

#2- CLEV. 

4 

N.Y. 

#3- N.Y. 

5 

CLEV. 

#4- N.Y. 

2 

CLEV. 

#5- CLEV. 

10 

N.Y. 

#6- CLEV. 

Batting Leaders 

4 

N.Y. 


3 

0 

3 

1 

3 

3 


Avg.— Lou Boudreau (Clevj .423 
HR— Roger Maris (NY) 3 

The 1955 Brooklyn Dodgers won their first 
round contest with the 1936 New York Yankees 
thus eliminating any chance for a Y ankee team to 
win CGW’s version of GBTOAT. 


55 DODGERS VS. 36 YANKEES 


#1- N.Y. 
#2- N.Y. 
#3- BRKL 
#4- BRKL. 
#5- BRKL. 
#6- N.Y. 
#7- BRKL. 

Batting Leaders 


6 BRKL. 

2 BRKL. 

8 N.Y. 

2 N.Y. 

7 N.Y. 

6 BRKL. 

3 N.Y. 


Avg.— George Selkirk (NY) .428 
HR- Lou Gehrig (NY) 3 
Duke Snider (BK) 3 


5 
1 
0 
1 

6 
2 
2 


The final first round series pitted the 1934 Gas 
House Gang Cardinals against the 1976 Big Red 
Machine Cincinnati Reds. Both teams turned in 
great offensive performances with team batting 
averages of .321 (Reds) and .316 (Cardinals). The 
Reds also took the series. 

1976 REDS VS. 1934 CARDINALS 


#1- CINN. 5 

#2- CINN. 5 

#3- STL. 9 

#4- STL. 8 

#5- STL. 9 

#6- CINN. 9 

#7- CINN. 9 


STL. 3 

STL. 4 

CINN. 7 

CINN. 7 

CINN. 3 

STL. 4 

STL. 6 


30 


Batting Leaders 

Avg.— Ken Griffey |CN| .483 
Joe Medwick |SL|.464 
HR- Pete Rose |CN| 2 

Tony Perez (CN) 2 

In second round action the 1931 Athletics downed 
1948 Indians in seven games. 

t93t ATHLETtCS VS. tg48 tNOfANS 


#1- 

PHIL. 

14 

CLEV. 

3 

#2- 

CLEV. 

5 

PHIL. 

2 

#3- 

CLEV. 

7 

PHIL. 

3 

#4- 

PHIL. 

15 

CLEV. 

1 

#5- 

PHIL. 

6 

CLEV. 

5 

#6- 

CLEV. 

2 

PHIL. 

1 

#7- 

PHIL. 

8 

CLEV. 

4 


Batting Leaders 

Avg.— Ai Simmons |PH| .538 
Mute Haas (PH) .533 
HR— At Simmons (PH) 4 

The other second round series resulted in a 4-1 
series win for the 1976 Cincinnati Reds over the 
1955 Brooklyn Dodgers. Gary Nolan and Jack 
Billingham each pitched a shutout against the 
Dodgers and led their team to an amazing team 
ERA of 1.36. 


1976 REDS VS. 1955 DODGERS 


#1- CiNN. 2 

#2- CtNN. 6 

#3- BRKL. 4 

#4- CtNN. 7 

#5- CtNN. 3 


BRKL. 0 
BRKL. 1 
CtNN. 2 
BRKL. 2 
BRKL. 0 


Batting Leaders 

Avg.— Tony Perez .588 
HR- Gii Hodges |BK| 2 


In the exciting finals the 1931 Philadelphia 
Athletics defeated the 1976 Cincinnati Reds in 
seven games to win the GBTOAT tourney played 
at CGW. The seventh game was an extra-inning 
thriller in which the lead changed hands three 
times . After the Athletics jumped out to a 4-1 lead 
George Foster hit a two run homer in the 5th to 
make the score 4-3. Joe Morgan followed in the 7th 
inning with his fourth homer of the seven game 
series-a two run shot that put the Reds on top. The 
A’s tied it up in the 9th and sent the game into 
extra innings. The A’s loaded the bases with no 
one out in the 10th but were able to push across 
only one run. However, this turned out to be 
enough as the Reds left a runner in scoring 
position when Cesar Geronimo drove Bing Miller 
to the warning track with the last out of the game. 

1931 ATHLETICS VS. 1976 REDS 
#1- PHIL. 6 CINN. 1 

#2- CINN. 6 PHIL. 1 

#3- PHIL. 4 CINN. 3 

#4- CINN. 11 PHIL. 4 

#5- PHIL. 16 CINN. 0 

#6- CINN. 4 PHIL. 3 

#7- PHIL. 6 CINN. 5 


Batting Leaders 

Avg.— AI Simmons |PH| .484 
HR— Joe Morgan (CN) 4 

Three readers sent in results of their GBTOAT 
tourneys. J.KLeeusedSSFSCOMPUTERBASEBALL 
option of letting the computer coach both teams 
(as we did at CGW). This reduces the possibilities 
of biased coaching to almost nil. Rick Mottley used 
COMPUTER BASEBALL but did not indicate if 
the “spectator option” (our phrase) was used. Mike 
McGoey did not include information as to which 
game he used. 


27 YANKEES 


31 ATHLETICS 

L 

27 YANKEES 


r 

4-2 

48 INDIANS 


48 INDIANS 




48 INDIANS 

4-3 


61 YANKEES 

i_ 


r 

4-2 



55 DODGERS 



55 DODGERS 

L_ 

55 DODGERS 


4-1 


4-3 

[ 55 DODGERS 


>54 UAMUINALb 

76 REDS 

V- 

76 REDS 

4-2 


4-1 


J.K. Lee 

So. Pasadena, CA 


27 YANKEES 


31 ATHLETICS 


48 INDIANS 


61 YANKEES 


55 DODGERS 


36 YANKEES 


76 REDS 


34 CARDINALS 


27 YANKEES 


4-2 

61 YANKEES 


4-3 

36 YANKEES 


4-2 

76 REDS 


4-3 


27 YANKEES 


4-3 


76 REDS 


4-3 


27 YANKEES 


4-0 


Rick Mottley 
Harrington Park, NJ 


27 YANKEES 


31 ATHLETICS 

1 27 YANKEES 



1 4-1 



48 INDIANS 




4-1 




55 DODGERS 

36 YANKEES 

34 CARDINALS 

76 REDS 

1 4-2 


61 YANKEES 

1 36 YANKEES 


4-1 

1 4-1 

34 CARDINALS 


I 34 CARDINALS 

4-3 



4-0 


Mike McGoey 
River Ridge, LA 


So we have four different tournaments with four 
different winners. Amazed? I guess all those 
baseball fans who love to spend hours arguing 
about which team is the greatest are not just 
blowing hot air. Maybe there isn’t a GREATEST 
TEAM. We’ve always been partial to the California 
Angels around here. Any takers? B 


31 




BASIC INFORMATION 

NAME; 

Olympic Decathlon 

TYPE: 

Hi-res Sport Game 

SYSTEM: 

Apple II (48K) 

TRS-80 Model I (32K/16K) 

FORMAT: 

Disk or Tape 

# PLAYERS 

1 to 6 

AUTHOR: 

Timothy W. Smith 

PRICE: 

$29.95 

PUBLISHER: 

Microsoft 

10700 Northup Way 

Bellevue, WA 98004 
206-828-8080 


What kind of list would be compiled if the same 
question were to be asked about computer games? 
Before you read any further about one of my 
favorite games, why don’t you compile a list of say 
five games that you would take with you to that 
bomb shelter or on that lonely space flight to 
Nuba-Nuba. 

Without a doubt, one of the games on my list 
would be Microsoft’s OLYMPIC DECATHLON 
(hereafter OD). OD has all of the characteristics 
that are required of a long-lasting, quality game. 
The premise of the game is something to which 
almost everyone can relate. Having supurb graphics 
and sound, it plays well solitaire and shines as a 
multi-player game. It remains interesting and fun 
to play long after other computer games are buried 
in your library. 


We have all been asked the question “If, for 
whatever reason, you could only have (insert 
number) books to read for the rest of your life what 
would they be’’. It is an important question since it 
forces us to evaluate the worth of all books. Which 
ones will remain fresh over the years? Which ones 
will provide whatever we feel a book should 
provide? 


In OD, every player competes in each of the ten 
events of the decathlon. Two events (Shot Put, 
Hurdles), require paddles while the remaining 
eight require keyboard pounding. I say “pounding”, 
because what one does at the keyboard during any 
event can hardly be called data entry. In the 100 
and 400 meter dashes, for example, players rapidly 
pound two keys which propels them down the 
track. I never thought that I’d see the day when 


32 



I would get muscle strain from “entering data”. 
After many events, you are likely to find your 
heart pounding almost as rapidly as it would were 
you competing “live”. 

You are told during the striking introductory 
sequence that the world record for the Olympic 


Decathlon is 8,168 points set by Bruce Jenner in 
the 1976 Montreal Olympics. For those who wish 
to compete against his scores, the rule book lists 
them as follows: 

100 METER DASH- 

819 pts. 

LONG JUMP- 

865 pts. 

SHOT PUT- 

810 pts. 

HIGH JUMP- 

882 pts. 

400 METER DASH- 

922 pts. 

110 MHURDLES- 

866 pts. 

DISCUS- 

873 pts. 

POLE VAULT- 

1,005 pts. 

JAVELIN 

862 pts. 

1500 METER RUN- 

714 pts. 

Total Points 

8,618 pts. 


Beating Jenner’s score takes practice, but most 
players do so given time. Microsoft indicates that 
the highest scores they know of (March 1982) are 
10,901 (Apple version) and 11,118 (TRS-80 version). 

For those of you who are beginners at the game, 
here are a few tips that helped me to increase my 
scores (which are higher than Jenner’s but not 
nearly as high as the Microsoft record. In the 100 
and 400 meter dash all you do is alternately strike 
two keys (e.g. the “1” and “2” keys). I found that 
my scores shot up dramatically when I ignored 
what was happening on the screen and kept my 
eyes on the keys. Concentrate on rapid strokes in 
which your fingers never leave the keys. Raising 
your fingers even a fraction will slow you down. 

In the shot put I find that exploding the triceps 
to about 35% followed in sequence by shoulders to 
50%, triceps on up to 100% and shoulders to 100% 
would put the shot out to the 18 meter range and 
occasionally off the screen. 

The first key in the hurdles is to avoid knocking 
down the hurdles, which slow you down consid- 
erably. Once you can do this on a regular basis try 
developing a three-step/jump four-step/jump 
sequence. In my early runs I developed a three- 
step/jump routine which cleared the hurdles nice- 
ly but produced scores which were only so-so-to get 
more speed I needed to take more steps between 
hurdles. I eventually developed a technique by 
which I run three steps, jump in such a way to 
come down just beyond the hurdle, take four rapid 
steps, jump, land further beyond the next hurdle, 
and then repeat the process. 


My most frustraing event is the discus throw. 
This event requires you to set a percentage of 
strength given to turning. The higher the per- 
centage the farther you will throw the discus and 
the harder it is to throw between the “out of 
bounds” lines. It is relatively easy to make a 
“good” throw at only 75-85%, but your distance 
from the resulting score will be quite low. To get a 
decent score, you must set your turning strength in 
the 95-100% range. Unfortunately, making a 
“good” throw at this level can be very difficult. If 
the safety cage in this event showed dents from all 
the times the player had flung the discus against 
it, my cage would look like someone had set a few 
bombs off inside it. 

An aid in the pole vault, at greater heights, is to 
keep sufficient momentum while having to grip 
the pole higher up. This isn’t easy. I find that the 
pole can be gripped at least 10 centimeters below 
the point equivalent to the height which you are 
jumping; thus providing a little less “drag” on 
your forward momentum. 

In the javelin throw, run as suggested in the 
dashes until your man gets about 10 meters from 
the end of the runway. While frantically hitting 
the arrow keys, you can strike the keyboard with a 
clump of fingers in the “T” key area (no need to 
waste time looking for the specific key. Do not hit 
the return key just above the arrow key! I have 
often been flying down the runway at high speed 
only to hit the return key and watch my javalin 
streak off in a straight line. I find that an angle of 
about 45° gives the longest throws. 

The 1500-meter run can easily ruin a good 
overall score. Somewhat like an auto race game, you 
must keep your figure from crashing into the 
“walls”. If you hit the wall you must get off the 
wall quickly in the right direction; otherwise you 
will slow down and even end up going the wrong 
direction. If you get flustered while on the wall, 
you can end up starting from a dead stop and be 
out of contention for a decent score. Try to keep 
your figure in the center of the track and practice 
this event a million times. 

Speaking of practice-OD allows practice ses- 
sions on any of the events. In this way you can 
practice the same event repeatedly without going 
through the whole game. 

I’m sure that many of you have even better 
suggestions for high scores than mine. Please 
write us and, if they’re good suggestions, we’ll 
print them. 

OLYMPIC DECATHLON is one of the truly 
classic computer games. Get it not only for the fun 
of it, but because it is an important contribution to 
the computer gaming hobby. (■] 


33 






BASIC 

INFORMATION 

NAME: 

Lunar Lander 

TYPE: 

Arcade 

SYSTEM: 

TRS-80 Model 1, 16K 

FORMAT: 

Disk and Tape 

# PLAYERS: 

1 

AUTHORS: 

Mike Wall and 

Jack Moncrief 

PRICE: 

$20.95 (disk) 

PUBLISHER: 

Adventure International 

Box 3435 

Longwood, FL 32750 


Almost every neophyte programmer has been 
bitten by the “LUNAR LANDER” bug at one time 
or another. As soon as you have mastered print 
and input statements, you begin looking around 
for some fun programs to create or modify. One of 
the first that most of us find is some rudimentary 
version of “Landing A Space Ship On The Moon 
Without Smashing It Into Little Pieces”. This first 


attempt at “LASSOTMWSIILP” probably con- 
sisted of simple print and input statements, 
coupled with a straight algebraic equation 
formula for calculating speed, altitude and fuel 
consumption. The entire program consisted of 
about 12 lines of basic code and fit into some 500 
bytes of memory. Our appetites had only been 
stimulated, certainly not satisfied! Blurry eyed 
and with numbed fingers, you pounded the 
keyboard well into the wee, small hours of the 
morning, creating ever more complex and 
challenging “LASSOTMWSIILP’s”, complete with 
variable weight and velocity calculations, 
realistic input responses, and perhaps even real- 
time control and action! Finally, reaching the 
pinnacle of your programming skills, you 
tentatively ventured into the “set” and “reset” 
world of TRS-80 graphics, watching little square 
space ships descend to the lunar landscape. 

If that’s your current level of “LASSOTMWSIILP” 
sophistication, and you’re still looking for the 
ultimate moon lander... then this program was 
made for you! Adventure International’s version 
of “LUNAR LANDER”, released in 1980, presents 
a diverting challenge that can occupy you for just 
a few minutes or up to several hours at a time. It 
simulates an Apollo moon shot mission during the 
last few minutes of the descent of the Lunar 


34 




Excursion Module (LEM) to the lunar surface. 

The controls are simple. The space bar provides 
a downward blast from the main rocket engine to 
slow your descent (or shoot you back up into space 
if you over-do it.) The right and left arrow keys 
provide horizontal directional control through 
small thruster jets on the side of the lander; 
operation of which these thruster jets takes a bit of 
practice. The right arrow fires the left jet, thus 
moving the craft to the right. The left arrow fires 
the right jet, moving the craft to the left. It all 
works out, but be careful on your first few attempts 
at getting into some of the tighter landing sites. 
You’re sure to hit the wrong arrow at some critical 
point and go careening into a wall of lunar rock. 

The lunar terrain is a fanciful cross between the 
New York skyline and the Swiss Alps. There’s not 
a flat meteor impact crater in sight! If Neal 
Armstrong had encountered this topography on 
his moon landing, he would have turned around 
and headed back for terra firma! Nevertheless, 
you’re expected to find a suitably flat landing spot 
and maneuver into it without “smashing into a lot 
of little pieces”. Notice that I said “manuever into 
it” and not “onto it”. Some of the landing sites 
resemble an overhung sea-side cave rather than 
the surface of the moon. Y ou definitely must move 
“into” it, going sideways, up, down and around, 
rather than the more conventional straight 
vertical descent to a soft touchdown at Tranquility 
Base. All of this creates a suitable challenge for 
the more adept space adventurers and serves to 
maintain the interest of less dexterous keyboard 
manipulators (such as myself) who gaze in awe at 
today’s nimble fingered whiz-kids. 

Each landing site is given a difficulty rating of 
from 100 to 900 (the single nine hundred pointer 
resembles a pretzel). Your total score is based on 
the points accumulated by successive safe 
landings on a given allotment of fuel. You are sent 
back up to try again with the remaining fuel after 
each successful landing.. .or crash. The program 
keeps a record of the highest score achieved during 
each session of play. 

A classic example of the conflict between 
realism and playability in games has found its 
way into this program. Obviously, a game is more 
fun if you can keep at it, achieving higher and 
higher scores, and continually attempting to 
surpass your previous best efforts. Just as 
obviously, once a lunar vehicle is out of fuel, that 
should be the end of it, no matter how good you are. 
Not so, in “Lunar Lander”! In order to allow an 
accomplished player to continue his winning 
streak, one of the landing sites is stocked with a 
fuel supply which can be used to replenish the 
lander and continue on to greater heights. 


Supposedly the fuel was storeo there by a previous 
mission. Not realistic perhaps, lut it does make 
the game more playable. 

For those who have struggled vith simple basic 
graphics commands... eat yo'ir hearts out! The 
whole program runs in machine language, and the 
graphics are outstanding! The lunar module first 
appears as a simple shape at tire op of the screen. 
But as you approach the lunar surface, the visual 
range narrows in width, so that everything on the 
screen enlarges to provide greater detail. The 
entire screen image scrolls to nther right or left, 
providing the suggestion of a continuous 
landscape. The machine language provides fast 
screen image update and the whole visual effect is 
quite smooth. The lunar surface is well designed, 
with shading lines creating i hint of size and 
depth. 

Simple sound effects are available if an 
amplifier is connected to the grey output plug. The 
sound consists of short radar like beeps, a low fuel 
warning bleep, a static-like explosion when you 
crash and a little musical salute, complete with 
flag raising, when you land safely. Nothing great, 
but certainly adequate for the intended purpose. 

All in all, the program is excellent, but I do have 
some suggestions for future revisions. Most lunar 
lander programs begin the descent from a much 
higher altitude, giving the player an opportunity 
to work out a fuel management strategy starting 
from the actual lunar orbital speed and altitude. 
The inclusion of this aspect of the descent would 
require consideration of variables such as weight 
vs. density ratios, acceleration factors, and 
inertial energy. It would add a bit of strategic 
challenge for those who enjoy games for a mental 
as well as a finger exercise. 

Two other improvements would aid in the control 
of the lander itself. The first concerns the main 
engine control. When the space bar is pressed, the 
power is on, when released, it is off. There’s 
nothing in-between. This makes control difficult 
in the cramped quarters of seme of the landing 
sites, where finer control inputs would be 
valuable-something other than the all or nothing 
now available. Finally, readouts of descent and 
horizontal velocities might prove helpful. Without 
accurate speed information, you’re flying 
somewhat blind; depending on visual cues which do 
not keep you fully informed of your status. 

In spite of these suggestions, however, I have no 
real complaints. Adventure International has a 
winning program here. It is just as advertised-a 
quality version of an old standby. It just makes me 
a bit envious when I look at some of my early 
efforts at creating a “LASSOTMWSIILP” 
program. B 


35 




BASIC INFORMATION 

NAME: 

Swashbuckler 

TYPE: 

arcade 

SYSTEM: 

Apple II (48K) 

FORMAT: 

Disk 

# PLAYERS: 

1 

AUTHOR: 

Paul Stephenson 

PRICE: 

$34.95 

PUBLISHER: 

Datamost 

9748 Cozycroft Ave. 
Chatsworth, CA 91311 


Piracy on the high seas, of course, is the piracy 
to which I refer. But to say SWASHBUCKLER is 
a game about piracy wouldn’t really be correct. 
SWASHBUCKLER is a fantastic hi-resolution 
test of skill and accuracy, wherein a player 
controls a tiny swordsman who weaves, spins, parries, 
lunges, and crosses swords with a vast host of 
bedraggled (yet dangerous) crew members aboard 
a seaborne ship. But before I get too far into game 
content, let’s take a look at the product in stages, 
as will you, should you decide to purchase it. 


SWASHBUCKLER hangs on the rack like 
your typical Apple gaming software. It’s made for 
a 48K system, and is produced by Datamost. 
Opening the package, the simple documentation 
within gives a brief (though descriptive) back- 
ground on your adventures as a swordsman on the 
Spanish Main. The art and logo are good, but are 
typical Creative Associates work or a clone 
thereof, which are becoming disturbingly prominent 
on recent gaming packages. Unique art doesn’t 
cost any more, and surely makes a game stand out 
on the shelves. 

SWASHBUCKLER would probably fall into 
the “arcade” catagory of games, even though the 
idea is, to my knowledge, entirely original. By 
pressing the appropriate keys one can cause a tiny 
swordsman to dodge and thrust like an expert 
fencer, moving back and forth over the center part 
of the screen as he battles opponents entering 
from the left and right hand sides. The game seems 
to operate by manipulating the graphics pages 
while constantly drawing fantastically detailed 
shape tables on the screen. As you lunge and 
parry, your opponents may slash with their 
cutlasses, twirl their polearms, lean against a wall 
for support or swing a club menacingly overhead. 
It all looks so real it’s staggering. 

As for playtesting, it was a real pleasure. You 
begin your battle two levels below decks, and you 


36 



must fight your way through two waves of 
opponents to move up. After twenty-five kills you 
receive a spare life - you start with but three. The 
crew does not get deadly accurate until you get 
up onto the top deck. You have rats, scorpions, 
snakes, and spiders which scuttle by your feet to 
wound or kill you, while at the same time you have 
to contend with two advancing crew members, 
each bent on your immediate demise. After fighting 
through eighty kills, I find myself pitted against 
an entirely new crew member - the samurai. 
Slipping past his guard without impaling yourself 
on his sword isn’t easy. 

Putting aside my convictions that this is the 
finest game I’ve played this year, I must admit 
that a few things did disappoint me. First, after a 
player receives his spare man at twenty-five kills, 
he’s out of luck for some time. Also, once I hit the 
top deck there appeared no other place to go. Even 
after two hundred kills I could see I wasn’t going 
anywhere. But, to my surprise, after 250 kills the 
counter reset itself to “00000” for no apparent 
reason, and started counting kills from one again. 
This is my number two complaint: what’s the use 
of having your hi-score saved on the disk if it 
gets reset after 250? Of course, the one good benefit 
from this is that when the counter hits twenty-five 
again you get a new life. Shortly after 250 kills you 
go back down one level, to seemingly fight easier 
opponents, and then you come up on deck again. 
Logical? Not to me, but then I was out after 278 
kills, so if anything happens later, it missed me. 
My number three complaint is more an obser- 
vation based on an opinion: why didn’t the 
programmer do more with this game at the end? 
Maybe at 250 kills you fight in the crow’s nest, or 
on the beach nearby. 

In any case. I’d like to restate my opinion 
that this is a fine game, and well worth purchasing. 
Have you ever had someone over who looks at your 
Apple and asks, “Can you play games on it?” 
Chuckle to yourself, then boot up SWASH- 
BUCKLER for them. 

ED. NOTE - Dave Gordon of Datamost informs 
us that the problem of reseting the counter after 
250 kills will be solved. Michael’s score is the 
highest of which Datamost is aware. If the highest 
score on record is 250 it is no wonder that I was 
frustrated by the presence of a 5 digit scoreboard! 
Can you imagine how long it would take to get a 
SWASHBUCKLER score that high? 

A couple of techniques that have proven helpful 
around here are: 1) Avoid killing your opponent 
close to the center of the fighting area. Drive him 
back first. In this manner he will not re- 
materialize too close to you as you engage the 
opponent on the opposite side. 2) If you do kill an 


opponent in the center you can push the corpse 
into the corner by moving your fighter in that 
direction. 3) When you kill an opponent in the 
corner immediately lunge again and you will kill 
his replacement as he materializes. 

Players of the game at CGW find the graphics to 
be supurb and the design somewhat unique 
(however, see Automated Simulations DRA- 
GON’S EYE for another treatment of hi-res sword- 
fighting). However the lack of variety causes the 
game to become tiresome after a few dozen kills. 
That not-with-standing, Michael is correct when 
he points out that SWASHBUCKLER is a fine 
showcase game. (B] 


Continued from p. 28 

In the master pattern example above, the 
Jabbertalker will randomly select a Level 1 word 
from List I, List B, and a Level 1 Noun Phrase 
from List 3 to complete the sentence. The final 
sentence will look something like this: 

A (adjective) (noun) is a (noun phrase). 

Of course, you will have to create the noun 
phrase patterns, too. Each sentence pattern can 
first be tested using the Make Sentence option 
before entering it in your syntax lists. 

Understanding Jabbergrammar definitely requires 
a hands-on approach. The game is ideal for anyone 
who enjoys creating and manipulating words and 
sentences. As you learn new vocabulary words from 
your schooling, profession, reading or hobby, 
simply plug the words into the appropriate lists 
and then watch and learn how the words are used. 
Remember, too, that a foreign language could easily 
be programmed into Jabbergrammar. 

The 31-page instruction booklet clearly summarizes 
all commands and command keys for each game mode. 
It also provides complete vocabulary and syntax 
lists for each special vocabulary contained on the 
game diskette. Having a knowledge of syntax ~ 
transitive, passive, reflexive, auxiliary, etc. - 
would be helpful but is not a necessity. 

In conclusion, once you understand how the game 
functions, it really is quite simple. By the way, 
I’ve not revealed all of the Jabbertalker’s secrets... 
these you must discover on your own. So, while 
I try to find Alice, why don’t you just uncurl your 
cramped fingers from about that joystick, forget 
about the aliens or hidden treasure for a little 
while, and enter the world of the Jabbertalker. 

“Who is the Jabbertalker, you ask. Only the 
most venerable, ancient, and grammatically 
impeccable master of wisdom and nonsense ever 
to scoll across the monitor of life” (from the 
the booklet) . 


37 



graphics, Voyager is somewhat a disappointment 
as a game. My complaints fall into two major 
categories. The first is that the game is not 
challenging enough. The key to winning the game 
is not so much skill or strategy as it is persistence. 
In the course of his wanderings through the ship, 
the player will encounter the robot guardians of 
the ship. The robots are located in various rooms 
on the four levels. With one exception you have no 
prior warning of a robot until it attacks you. It’s 
presence is announced by the first blast from it’s 
laser. Also, it appears that the robot will always 
get off two shots before the player can return fire. 
For this reason, it is to the player’s advantage to 
maintain a full complement of strength points 
before entering a new room. Thus, I found my 
game “strategy” consisting of 2 or 3 rapid moves 
followed by a period of inactivity (20 - 60 seconds) 
while I waited for my strength points to re-accumu- 
late. There is one way to locate robots before you 
run into them. After you have some mapping under 
your belt you can go to an elevator and look at the 
various level maps that have been plotted. Often 
you find robots detected in rooms you previously 
occupied. These robots will patiently wait for you 
to come to them. Simply travel to the room 
adjacent to one of the robots, rest to restore your 
strength, then go in with laser firing. My second 
complaint, deals with the manner of resurrection. 
After a brief, graphic eulogy, the player is asked if 
he wishes to resurrect the character. If he answers 
yes, his character is resurrected back into the ship 
at a random location. What strikes me as 
unreasonable is that all the map information 
accumulated by the player up to the point of his 
demise is retained, and can be recalled by simply 
pressing M. Thus the player can resume play with 
his death being no more than a brief interruption 
in the action. If death is to be used as a deterent to 
some types of activities, the penalty for death 
should be severe enough to intimidate the player 
into some form of caution and prudence. 

In conclusion, I feel that while the graphics of 
Voyager I are good the game design itself is too 
simplistic to hold the interest of the average 
computer game player for very long. If persistence 
is your “thing” you will find Voyager I interesting 
but those who enjoy employing strategies or arcade 
arcade skills will probably want to look elsewhere. 


Screen Layout 
Worksheet 




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38 




WRITING FOR 

COMPUTER GAMING WORLD 


Almost all of the articles in CGW come from 
active readers of the magazine. We invite your 
submissions of articles, art, humor, etc.. CGW 
pays two cents per word for most copy and $30.00 
per page for most art work. Art work for less than a 
page will be pro-rated. 

REVIEWS 

The majority of articles in CGW will be reviews. 
These will fall into two catagories: 1) micro- 
reviews of 300 to 400 words; and 2) feature reviews 
of about 500-2500 words. Micro-reviews should 
contain the following: 1) The information which 
goes into the Basic Information Box (see this 
issue); 2) General description of the fiction/back- 
ground of the game; 3) A more detailed description 
of the graphics, documentation, and above all the 
game design itself. Refer to READER INPUT 
DEVICE on pg. 40 to see the kinds of questions a 
review should answer; 4) A discussion of the 
strong and weak points of the game. Remember 
that computer gamers have wide ranging tastes 
and a game which is “poison” to one may be 
“meat” to another. The strengths and weaknesses 
you find should be those of the game, not the 
game type; 5) A summary of the game which 
might suggest what type of computer gamer will 
want to buy this game and/or what type of gamer 
will want to pass it by; 6) If possible include a good 
photograph (color or b/w) of the game ($2.00 is paid 
if the photograph is printed). To get rid of monitor 
screen “phasing” in the photograph you must not 
use a shutter speed faster than l/30th of a second. 

A 400 word micro-review cannot cover a game in 
detail but can: 1 ) give an overview of the game to a 
potential purchaser; and, if appropriate, 2) suggest 
some strategies for playing the game well. Any 
game released in the last 12 months is acceptable 
for a micro-review. 

A feature review will do everything that a micro- 
review does but on an expanded scale. The subject 
of a feature length review should be a new game 
(released in the last 12 months) or one that has 
become a “standard”. When appropriate CGW 
will print reviews of books, hardware, etc. as they 
relate to the computer gaming field. 

STRATEGY AND TACTICS 

While many reviews will contain suggestions on 
strategy and tactics, we also welcome articles 
which are primarily strategy /tactics oriented. 
This type of article will go into detail concerning 


what techniques provide high scores or help a 
player better attain the goal of the game. In 
general, clues to adventure type games should 
rarely be included. Where they are included they 
should be in slip code (i.e. shift the letters of the 
sentence one letter to the right or the left). 

SCENARIOS 

Formal and informal scenarios can be designed 
for some computer games. A formal scenario is one 
which uses the scenario designing routine of the 
game such as SSI’s Torpedo Fire. An informal 
scenario is one which the writer makes up an alter- 
nate goal for a game with success being deter- 
mined independently of the game’s stated scoring 
system. An example would the “Castle Wolfen- 
stein Dash” in which a point is awarded for each 
room entered minus one point for each guard 
killed. The Operation Apocalypse Campaign 
Scenario in 2.2 is another example of an informal 
scenario. 

THE SILICON CEREBRUM 

Bruce Webster actively solid tes submissions to 
our regular column on gaming and artificial in- 
telligence. Contact him directly: 9264 Grossmont 
Blvd., La Mesa, CA 92041. 

DESIGNER‘S NOTES 

CGW urges game designers to submit designer’s 
notes articles on their games. Contact us if you 
have any questions. 

FICTION AND HUMOR 

From time to time, CGW will print fiction related 
to the computer gaming field. Humor will be 
included on a regular basis if quality material is 
submitted. 

FORMAT 

Article submissions should be typed. The manu- 
script should at least be double spaced and pref- 
erably triple spaced with a one inch margin all 
around. Please try to avoid all-upper-case printing. 
For the sake of our editors, please double check 
both grammar and punctuation. Be sure your 
name, address and phone number are typed on the 
first page. Include a SASE for return of unsuitable 
material. 

RIGHTS 

All submissions become the property of Golden 
Empire Publications, Inc., rights revert to author 
upon publication or rejection. Specifically, our 
purchase covers first world rights. 


39 



READER INPUT DEVICE #2 


In our last issue we began a new 
feature entitled READER INPUT 
DEVICE (RID). In that issue, 36 
games (each of which was treated in 
some fashion in our first two issues) 
were offered for consideration of our 
readers. The number of responses 
was low enough (twenty) that we felt 
the results could not be considered 
“statistically significant”. Therefore 
we decided against printing the 
complete results. However there were 
some interesting results in certain 
areas. The game with the highest 
overall rating was ROBOTWAR 
(Muse) with a 7.04 composite score. 
SSI’s THE SHATTERED ALLI- 
ANCE was second with a 6.78 
composite. The four peole who rated 
Chris Crawford’s EASTERN FRONT 
each gave the game a “9” for graph- 
ics (the highest possible score). There 
was a tie for the highest rated article. 
Both Joel Billing’s NAPOLEON’S 
CAMPAIGN NOTES article and 
Chris Crawford’s SO YOU WANT 
TO WRITE A COMPUTER GAME 
article received a 7.20 rating. 

This issue will offer for your review 
some of the games from the last 
editon of RID as well as some games 
from 2.2 and 2.3. 


USE POSTCARD PROVIDED 
TO SEND IN ANSWERS. 


GAMES 

Rate the following games using a 
scale of 1 (terrible) to 9 (outstanding) 
for each of the catagories below; 

PRESENTATION: Rate overall 
presentation of the game. This in- 
cludes such factors as graphics, 
sound, packaging, documentation. 
GAME DESIGN: Rate the game 
design itself. Apart from the pre- 
sentation is the game well designed, 
playable, interesting? Are there pro- 
blems in the design which make the 
game less than it should be?; LIFE: 
Does the game wear well? Does one 
bore of the game easily or does it still 
command interest after multiple plays? 


OTHER: This is our utility box. For 
this issue we want to know the per- 
centage of these games that are 
pirated. If you bought the game in 
question enter a “1” in this box; if 
you have a pirated copy enter a “2”. 
If you played someone else’s copy 
but do not have it yourself enter a 
“3”. Please be candid. Enter “0” in 
the first box for any game which you 
have not played. 


1. TORPEDO FIRE (SSI) 

2. ROBOTWAR (Muse) 

3. B-1 NUCLEAR BOMBER (AH) 

4. CRUSH, CRUMBLE & CHOMP 
(AS) 

5. PRESIDENT ELECT (SSI) 

6. MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL 
(AH) 

7. COMPUTER BASEBALL (SSI) 

8. EASTERN FRONT (Atari SE) 

9. ODYSSEY (Synergistic) 

10. NAPOLEON’S CAMPAIGNS 
13&15 (SSI) 

11. SWORDTHRUST SERIES (CE) 

12. GALAXY (AH) 

13. CASTLE WOLFENSTEIN (Muse) 

14. TANKTICS (AH) 

15. WALL STREET (CE) 

16. CARTELS & CUTTHROATS (SSI) 

17. ZORK (INFOCOM) 

18. SHATTERED ALLIANCE (SSI) 

19. SOUTHERN COMMAND (SSI) 

20. BLACKJACK MASTER (Hayden) 

21. TIGERS IN THE SNOW (SSI) 

22. A2-FS1 FLIGHT SIMULATOR 
(Sublogic) 

23. BUG ATTACK (Cavalier) 

24. DAVID’S MIDNIGHT MAGIC 
(Broderbund) 

25. TIME ZONE (On-Line) 

26. WIZARDRY (Sir-Tech) 

27. DNIEPER RIVER LINE (AH) 

28. SWASHBUCKLER (Datamost) 

29. OLYMPIC DECATHLON (Micro- 
soft) 


■ a n s ■ B B B 11 B ■ n H 

ARTICLES 


Rate the articles in this issue on a 
scale of 1 (terrible) to 9 (outstanding). 
If the article does not interest you 
enter 0. 


30. WIZARDRY REVIEW 

31. TIME ZONE INTERVIEW 

32. TACTICS FOR EASTERN FRONT 

33. LONG DISTANCE GAMING 

34. VOYAGER I REVIEW 

35. SILICON CEREBRUM 

36. OLYMPIC DECATHLON RE- 
VIEW 

37. JABBERTALKY, IN DEPTH 

38. SWASHBUCKLER: ANOTHER 
KIND OF PIRACY 

39. BASEBALL TOURNAMENT RE- 
SULTS 

40. ATARI ARCADE 

41. THE EAGLE HAS LANDED 

42. COMPUTER FAIRE PHOTOS 

MISCELLANEOUS 

Enter answer in the “Other” column 
for the next five questions. 

43. What computer system do you 
own? l=Apple; 2=Atari; 3=TRS-80; 
4=PET; 5=IBM; 6=Other. 

44. Sex l=Female; 2=Male. 

45. Age l=Under 18; 2=18 to 25; 3=26 
to 39; 4=40 to 55; 5=over 55. 

46. How many issues of CGW have 
you read? l=One; 2=Two; 3=Three; 
4= All four. 

47. Would you be interested in a 
poster series reproducing the various 
covers of CGW? l=yes; 2=no. 

Answer these last two questions in 
the places marked “A” & “B”. 

A. What would you like to read about 
in CGW? 

B. Comments: 



40 










CHALLENGING FOR EVERYONE 


Sample the ever-expanding line of Microcomputer Games® 
from the Avalon Hill Game Company. 

Discover the challenge of . . . slaying a dragon . , , mapping an alien spacecraft . . . 
thwarting a Soviet offensive . . . landing a jumbo jet . . . coaching a professional sports team. 

Microcomputer Games® has them all and much morel 
Each game comes complete with loading and playing instructions, 
aiong with cassette or diskette software for the most popuiar home computers. 



VOYAGER 

A solitaire computer game that 
challenges the human player to 
explore the four levels of an alien 
spacecraft's maze-like corridors 
and rooms in 3-D simulated 
graphics, all the while avoiding 
robots programmed to blast any 
intruders. In order to win, the 
human must destroy all power 
generators and escape or hunt 
out and annihilate the killer robots. 
VOYAGER comes with color- 
animated graphics and sound 
capabilities for computers so 
equipped. 



COMPUTER 
FOOTBALL STRATEGY 

Thrilling computer version of 
Avalon Hill's famous board game. 
Based on the award-winning 
Sports Illustrated game of profes- 
sional football; forces the player to 
constantly make the right deci- 
sions about his team's offensive 
and defensive formations. Match 
wits against the computer or 
against a live opponent. 


DNIEPER RIVER LINE 

A tictionalized engagement be- 
tween the Russian and German 
forces in the southern Ukraine in 
■IRAS. The game challenges you, 
the German commander, to repel 
Russian efforts to breach the 
Dnieper River defensive positions. 
Soviet units, controlled by the com- 
puter, seek to overrun the thin 
German line and capture suffi- 
cient objectives to attain victory. 
DNIEPER RIVER LINE has tour levels 
of difficulty and comes complete 
with over 300 illustrated counters 
and a mounted mapboard. 


CONTROLLER 

A real-time simulation of air traffic 
control in which you will have to 
guide the approach and landing 
sequence of up to 8 aircraft. There 
are three types of aircraft: Light 
Planes, Airliners, and Private Jets, 
with each type having a different 
rate of climb, turning ability, stall 
speed, ceiling, fuel consumption 
and fuel capacity. CONTROLLER 
transforms your microcomputer 
screen into a realistic "radar 
scope"; also, each aircraft's 
heading, velocity, and altitude is 
continuously displayed on a 
separate chart next to the radar 
scope. 




GALAXY 



Have you ever wanted to conquer 
the universe? In GALAXY, players 
send their galactic tieets out to 
explore and conquer the 
universe, solar system by solar 
system. The planets discovered 
may be barren worlds or they may 
possess immense industrial 
capacity and defensive ships to 
resist colonization. GALAXY 
comes with sound effeots (for com- 
puters with sound capability) and 
allows from 1 to 20 players to com- 
pete against each other or the 
computer. A different star map is 
randomly generated for every 
game. 



GUNS OF FORT DEFIANCE 


In this exciting arcade game, you 
are the oommander of a ^ 9th cen- 
tury artillery piece in a besieged 
stockade. For each shot you must 
speoify a type of ammuni- 
tion— ball, cannister, shell or 
spherical case— and fuse length 
(if applicable), and set the eleva- 
tion and deflection of the cannon. 
The computer controls the enemy 
foroes, randomly attacking with 
cavalry, infantry or another 
artillery piece. 



COMPUTER 
FOREIGN EXCHANGE 

Two to four players own and 
manage multi-national com- 
panies in various cities throughout 
the world. Changing conditions 
require each player to make con- 
stant deoisions after considering 
the financial resources of his com- 
pany and his opponents. A variety 
of situations will determine likely 
changes in currency rates. To win, 
a player must form and implement 
the most successful strategy. 


- .!-'T 5 p- IJ 








CU mjc''xe'^put<f 9cmM 

A DIVISION OFTHE AVALON HILL CAME COMPANY 


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B-1 

NUCLEAR 

BOMBER 


Midway 

Campaign. 


B-1 NUCLEAR BOMBER 

You are the pilot of a B-1 bomber on a mission over the 
Soviet Union. You must fly through stiff Russian defenses to 
the target city, bomb it and return home. Your computer 
controls the Soviet MIG fighters and surface-to-air missiles. 
You must rely on your electronic counter measures and 
self-defense missiles. 

NORTH ATLANTIC CONVOY RAIDER 

In the Bismarck convoy raid of 1941. the computer controls 
the British convoys and battleships. Will the Bismarck sink 
the Hood, only to be sunk by the Rodney and King George 
V, as in history? Or, v/ill the Bismarck cripple or sink the 
British Home Fleet and go rampaging through the convoy 
lanes? 

LORDS OF KARMA 

Like an intriguing puzzle! The fun is in deciphering secrets 
while exploring a mythical, magical city and countryside, 
while at the same time avoiding lurking monsters. You tell 
the computer what you want by typing simple sentences. 
The computer has many surprises in store. 

MIDWAY CAMPAIGN 

Your computer controls a huge force of Japanese ships 
whose objective is to invade and capture Midway island. 
In the actual engagement, the Japanese made several 
tactical errors which cost them the battle. Your computer 
probably won't make the same mistakes! You command 
the badly outnumbered and outranged U.S. Naval Forces. 

NUKEWAR 

Nuclear confrontation between two hypothetical coun- 
tries Defend your country by massive espionage efforts, or 
by building jet fighter bombers, missiles, submarines and 
anti-ballistic missiles. Your cold and calculating computer 
will choose its own strategyl 

TANKTICS 

Armored combat on the Eastern front of WWII. Includes full- 
color mounted mapboard and counters. You, as the 
German tank platoon leader, start the game out- 
numbered 2 to 1. However, you choose your tank types 
before each of 5 scenarios. You also specify what your 
opponent, the computer, is to have before going after or 
defending the specified objective from the Russians. 


COMPUTER ACQUIRE 

New Second Edition! The object of the game is to become 
the wealthiest person in this "business" game about hotel 
acquisitions and mergers. For 2 to 6 players it is a subtle 
game of interplayer strategy. As a SOLITAIRE game you 
play against the computer. One can even pit the com- 
puter against itself, 

EMPIRE OF THE OVERMIND 

Recent recipient of the GAME OF THE YEAR award by Elec- 
tronic Games Magazine. Enchanting solitaire game. The 
Overmind, a tyrant that is part machine, part spirit of evil, 
cleverly overthrew the great king, who escaped and 
planned revenge that has taken 1 ,000 years to fulfill. Now, 
YOU must travel to the Empire of the Overmind and destroy 
the abomination. 

PLANET MINERS 

One to four players compete with each other and the com- 
puter to stake valuable mining claims throughout the solar 
system in the year 2050. Each player must decide which 
ships to send to which planets and when to try "dirty tricks" 
like a sabotage and claim jumping. 

CONFLICT 2500 

In 2500 AD, earth is threatened by attacking aliens pro- 
grammed with an infinite number of attack strategies with 
which to tease the player who must defend earth. A variety 
of spaceships on the screen adds an extra dimension to 
the excitement, A game for one to ten players in which you 
can control the length of the game and its difficulty. 

COMPUTER STATtS PRO BASEBALL 

Recreate an entire baseball season, championship or 
world series with real life player statistics, Avalon Hill has 
analyzed full season statistics for each player, converting it 
to computer memory so each performs in your game just 
as he does in reality. 

COMPUTER STOCKS AND BONDS 

Here's your chance to be a Wall Street genius. Players 
choose a general strategy and invest in the stocks that fit 
their game-plan. Play it safe, gamble or do a little of both. 
In a "bear" market players investing heavily could lose 
their shirts, while a "bull" market would cause them to 
make great gains. 


SOFTWARE 

GAMES 

With Cassette For 

With Diskette For 


TRS-SQ 

Cork 

TRS-CO 
Models 
18 III 

Rm.£ 

II* . 

m 

CBM 

ATARI 

400/ 

800* 

TflS 80 
Models 
IS III 

APPLE 
11* . 

ATARI 

400/ 

800* 

IBM 

PC. 

PflICf 

B-1 Nuclear 

Bomber 


16K 

16K 

16K 

16K 





16.00 






32 K 

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21.00 

Midway 

CampaiQn 


16K 

16K 

16K 

32 K 





16,00 






32K 

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21.00 

No.AtlantiC 
Cnvy Balder 


16K 

16K 

16K 

16K 





16,00 






32 K 

48K 

24K 


21.00 

Nukewar 


16K 

16K 

16K 

16K 





16.00 






32K 

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24K 


21,00 

Planet 

Miners 


16K 

16K 

16K 

24K 





16.00 






32K 

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32K 


21,00 

Lords ol 
Karma 


48K 

32K 

32K 

40K 





20.00 

25.00 






48K 

48K 

40K 


Computer 

Acquire 


16K 

16K 

16K 

16K 





2000 






32K 

4dK 

24K 


25.00 

Conflict 

2500 


16K 

16K 

16K 

32K 





16,00 






32K 

48K 

40K 


21.00 

Comp. Stabs 

Pro Base 


16K 








25.00 






32K 

48 K 



30 00 

Empire o> the 
OvermInd 


48K 

48K 


40K 





30,00 






48K 

48K 

40K 


3500 

Tanktics ' 


16K 

16K 

16K 

24K 





24.00 







48K 

32K 


2900 

StKks i 
Bonds 


16K 

32K 

16K 

32K 





20.00 






32K 

48K 

40K 

64K 

25.00 

Computer 

Foot Strat. 
















32K 




21.00 

Controller 








40K 


30.00 











Galaxy 


16K 

16K 

16K 

16K 





20,00 






32K 

48K 

32K 

48K 

25.00 

Guns of 

Ft Defiance 


16K 

32K 

16K 

32K 





20.00 






32K 

48K 


— 

25.00 

Voyager 

16K 

16K 

32K 

32K 

24K 




20.00 







48K 

32K 


25.00 

Dnieper 

Rn/er Line 


32K 

32K 

32K 

4BK 





2500 






32 K 

48K 

48K 


30.00 

Foreign 

Exchange 


16K 







- - 

20,00 










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